Russia Warns About US Imprisoning Its Nationals
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman
Countless thousands of political prisoners language in America’s global gulag, the world’s largest prison system domestically, along with countless facilities abroad in numerous countries.
Torture and other forms of abuse remain official US policy, political prisoners especially harmed, including by protracted isolation, amounting to unconstitutional cruel and unusual punishment.
Isolating people in cages longterm with minimal human contact flagrantly violates the 8th Amendment’s letter and spirit, 100,000 or more inmates affected in US prisons – excluding jails, juvenile facilities, undocumented immigrant incarcerations and military detentions.
I earlier said societies are are best judged by how they treat children, the elderly, the infirm, their most disadvantaged and prisoners. America fails on all counts – the most egregious human and civil rights abuser worldwide.
The US is waging economic, financial, sanctions, trade, and propaganda war on Russia – risking things escalating to something more serious.
Its nationals are endangered anywhere outside its borders, vulnerable to arrest and extradition to America if ordered.
Commercial pilot/businessman Konstantin Yaroshenko was framed, arrested and imprisoned on false charges. He’s endured “extreme government misconduct,” he explained, including “torture, brutal and inhumane treatment in detention.”
Viktor Bout was victimized like Yaroshenko, arrested and imprisoned on false charges. Unjustly called a “merchant of death,” he ran a legitimate air cargo business. He’s been mistreated and denied proper medical care.
Vadim Mirerin is another Russian political prisoner in America. A Foreign Ministry statement expressed “serious questions regarding the circumstances of (his) arrest” and abusive treatment.
In July 2017, Alexander Vinnik was arrested at the behest of the Trump regime while vacationing in Greece – on charges of money laundering. Trump’s Justice Department wants him extradited to the US.
Last summer, Maria Butina was arrested and detained without bond, falsely charged with operating as an unregistered Russian agent, harshly mistreated in detention like other Russian nationals, including suffocating solitary confinement.
Through her attorney, she coped a plea to end her cruel and unusual punishment, guilty only of being a Russian national in America at the wrong time.
Dmitry Makarenko is the latest Russian national to be targeted. Arrested in Guam on December 29, he’s accused of illegally exporting military equipment, a Russian Foreign Ministry statement saying:
“Our embassy in the US is continuing to seek consular access to Makarenko, which, in accordance with the bilateral Consular Convention, should have been granted before January 2.”
Trump regime authorities failed to inform Moscow of his arrest and detention within 72 hours as required.
In response to Russia’s arrest of US national Paul Whelan last Friday on suspicion of espionage, the US embassy in Moscow piously said the State Department “is committed to ensuring fair and humane treatment for US citizens imprisoned overseas…in accordance with international law, domestic and foreign law.”
Under Republicans and undemocratic Dems, the US doesn’t give a damn about the rights of Russian and other nationals – arrested and imprisoned on bogus charges.
Last August, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov slammed the unjustifiably arrest and detention of Russian nationals on phony charges, saying:
“We demand an end to the global hunt for our citizens, based on false charges. The US must stop that. In many cases, Russian nationals are arrested on US warrants or even without them,” adding:
“By using such methods, the US administration is trying to influence our country. If Washington was really interested in improving relations with Russia, then it would, first and foremost, take humanitarian steps in such cases.”
“The so-called US law enforcement agencies only seek to achieve their own goals, and there have been no changes for the better and no progress in this area, but it fills us with strength to continue the fight.”
“We have also been exerting political pressure on the US administration though with no response so far, but we will continue to do that.”
“The Americans strongly believe that those caught in the mills of justice must serve out their sentences. It is an aspect of US arbitrariness against Russian citizens.”
In response to Makarenko’s arrest and detention, Ryabkov again slammed US officials for “continuing their hunt on Russian citizens,” adding:
They “should assess the consequences of traveling abroad (because) there is…no safe place, no guarantee” they won’t be arrested and detained by US officials for political reasons.
Last December, Mira Terada was detained by Finnish police on an Interpol warrant initiated by the the Trump regime, according to Russia’s embassy in the country.
She’s charged with drugs trafficking and money laundering while in the US earlier. Her mother insists she’s innocent of false charges against her, saying:
She once was a drug case witness in America. One of her acquaintances was arrested on possession of illicit drugs, returning to Russia days after her visa expired because she was held over in the US for questioning on the case, her mother saying:
“So it turns out that any Russian national can be detained anywhere, even if they are just a witness in a criminal case.”
She’s harshly treated in detention while Finnish authorities await US evidence to justify extraditing her to America to stand trial on what appears to be phony charges.
Diplomatic rhetoric and tough talk like Ryabkov’s fall on deaf ears in Washington. Tit-for-tat toughness by Russia alone can work on virtually all bilateral differences.
The most effective way to get Washington’s attention on its imprisoned nationals is by targeting US ones abroad the same way, especially any in Russia – detaining them indefinitely until its nationals are freed and allowed to return home.
Toughness with the US alone is the workable option, diplomacy and playing by the rules a waste of time in bilateral dealings.
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