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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

Release of Mikhail Khodorkovskiy


Press Statement
John Kerry
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
December 20, 2013

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We welcome the pardon and release from prison of Mikhail Khodorkovskiy. We have repeatedly expressed our concerns about due process violations and selective prosecution in Russia, including against Khodorkovskiy and his business partner Platon Lebedev, who remains in prison.

The United States strongly encourages Russia to pursue reforms that establish a transparent, independent, and reliable judicial system that upholds its commitments to human rights, the rule of law, and non-discrimination.

We welcome the amnesty approved on the 20th anniversary of Russia's constitution. The United States supports the rights of all Russians to exercise their freedoms of expression, association, assembly, and belief, regardless of their political views. These rights are enshrined in the Russian Constitution as well as in international agreements to which Russia has committed itself. They are universal values, and their protection is a fundamental responsibility of all governments.



PRN: 2013/1610

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