Boris and Sergei Believed in a Brighter Future for Russia
Boris Nemtsov, the Russian politician, was assassinated near the Kremlin on 27 February 2015.
Sergei Magnitsky, a Russian lawyer, uncovered the largest publicly-known corruption case in Russia involving the theft of $230 million, testified about it naming complicit officials. Sergei was arrested by some of the implicated officials, held for 358 days in pre-trial detention in torturous conditions, and killed in Russian police custody on 16 November 2009.
On the 6th anniversary of Sergei Magnitsky’s murder, 16 November 2015, the Sergei Magnitsky Human Rights Awards were launched. The first Sergei Magnitsky Award for Campaigning for Democracy was awarded posthumously to Boris Nemtsov.
Statement by Bill Browder on the Sergei Magnitsky 2015 Human Rights Award for Democracy to Boris Nemtsov (presented posthumously)
Boris Nemtsov was a courageous man, and a true friend of the Magnitsky Justice campaign. He was a steadfast supporter of our initiative to impose targeted Western sanctions on Russian officials involved in human rights abuse and corruption.
Boris shamed weak Western diplomats who tried to appease the Russian leader, because he was convinced that the sanctions are the necessary, effective and morally right way to stand up to Russian official impunity.
Both Boris and Sergei were optimists and believed in a brighter future for Russia. They show us that Russia produces great people with humanity and integrity.
Their loss is a tragedy for Russia and the world.
The fact that both were killed in cold blood, and in both cases those responsible have not been brought to account, is the call for action.
We cannot bring Boris and Sergei back, but we owe it to them to carry on with our cause, to seek justice in the form of further Magnitsky sanctions on corrupt officials and human rights violators by countries around the world.