Washington D.C., Dec 16, 2019 / 12:00 pm
A bipartisan bill has been introduced in the House of Representatives to hold Russia accountable for what Congressmen claim is the persecution of religious groups in occupied territories of the Ukraine.
The legislation, the Ukraine Religious Freedom Support Act, requires the President to take account of any violations of religious freedom in areas of the Ukraine occupied by Russian-backed forces-the Crimean peninsula and "Donetsk People's Republic"-when considering a "country of particular concern" (CPC) designation for Russia. The bill was introduced on Friday.
Members of Congress who introduced the bill said that Russian forces and their proxies are guilty of imprisoning and torturing citizens in the Crimea for their religious beliefs.
"Russian officials are culpable, and this bill helps ensure they are held accountable," Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.), who introduced the bill along with Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II (D-Mo.), stated.