Global Human Rights Sanctions Regime

Sir Edward Leigh Excerpts
Monday 6th July 2020

(2 months, 2 weeks ago)

Commons Chamber
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Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office
Dominic Raab Portrait Dominic Raab - Hansard

I hope that the expressions of support for Sergei Magnitsky give solace to Natalia and Nikita through their enduring grief. The hon. Member is absolutely right. One of the reasons that this matter has not been discussed quite so much has been the opportunity with this regime to follow the money; if we can cut off the money and the people who are profiting from these appalling human rights abuses, we have a better chance of cutting out the activity and deterring it for the future. The hon. Member is bang on.

Sir Edward Leigh Portrait Sir Edward Leigh (Gainsborough) (Con) - Hansard

The largest group in the world subject to persecution today are Christians. We are not just discussing lethal persecution such as in North Korea; in many parts of the world there is persecution for churchgoing, blasphemy and many other issues. Will the Foreign Secretary assure me that this new regime will be used to target with sanctions those who deliberately target Christians?

Dominic Raab Portrait Dominic Raab - Hansard

My hon. Friend is absolutely right that this new regime gives us that power. On top of the legal regime, the asset freezes and the visa bans, the work of the Prime Minister’s special envoy for freedom of religion or belief has been immense; it has been a herculean shift. We are working with our international partners and intend to co-host a conference on freedom of religion or belief. That will give us the ability to do precisely what my hon. Friend wants us to do.