Mr. Nemtsov and MP Cotler condemn corruption and call for democratic renewal
Ottawa – Mr. Boris Nemtsov, leader of the Russian Democratic Opposition and former Deputy Prime Minister of Russia joins the Honourable Irwin Cotler, Liberal Justice and Human Rights Critic in condemning the culture of corruption and impunity in Russia.
Given recent parliamentary elections in Russia – marked by allegations of fraud and falsification – Mr. Nemtsov is working to bring about “democracy and freedom and modernization in Russia.” His People’s Freedom Party was not listed on the ballot for the December elections, since the Russian Ministry of Justice has refused for the last decade to officially recognize parties opposing the policies of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.
During the 2011 Fall Parliamentary Session, Professor Cotler introduced Bill C-339, An Act to condemn corruption and impunity in Russia in the case and death of Sergei Magnitsky. This Private Member’s Bill was introduced in light of the detention, abuse and death of Sergei Magnitsky, a Russian lawyer who uncovered the largest tax evasion fraud in the country’s history. This bill notes that despite extensive documented evidence incriminating senior Russian officials in serious human rights violations, in the embezzlement of funds from the Russian treasury, and in the retaliation against Mr. Magnitsky, none of the individuals responsible have been apprehended, brought to justice, or even identified in Russia.
MP Cotler said, “The ongoing impunity of Russian officials is as scandalous as it is shocking. It is a pleasure to welcome Mr. Nemtsov to Canada, as he expresses his bold vision for the future of his country.”
Looking to the future, Mr. Nemtsov and MP Cotler expressed their hope for democratic renewal and an end to the culture of impunity and corruption in Russia.
Mr. Nemtsov’s visit to Canada is being organized by the Central and Eastern European Council in Canada, and has included numerous engagements such as a keynote address at the Economic Club of Canada.