Andrew Mitchell speaks on an Urgent Question on the arrest of Alexei Navalny, his wife and his supporters.
Mr Andrew Mitchell (Sutton Coldfield) (Con)
My right hon. Friend the Member for North Thanet (Sir Roger Gale) is absolutely right to bring to the House this matter and that of the very brave Alexei Navalny, whose rights under the UN convention on human rights have been trampled underfoot and so grievously disrespected by a fellow member of the United Nations Security Council. Will the Minister confirm that she is co-ordinating collective action with our allies on this matter to hold the Russian leadership to account? Will she also confirm that, through the Magnitsky measures and other ways, not just Russia’s leaders but other officials who abuse Alexei Navalny’s human rights can be held to account in a similar way?
I know that my right hon. Friend has taken the issue of sanctions and Magnitsky seriously for some time and championed it. When it comes to the case of Alexei Navalny, we have been absolutely clear from the start in terms of mobilising the international community. We galvanised the international community in condemnation of these deplorable detentions with the statement on 26 January through our role as G7 president. In that statement, we emphasised our deep concern about these developments, but we were also very instrumental in leading international efforts in response to his poisoning in August last year, when we worked closely with our international partners at the OPCW to urge Russia to uphold its obligations under the chemical weapons convention.