Human Rights First Welcomes Vladimir Kara-Murza as Senior Advisor for Human Rights Accountability
Washington, D.C.—Human Rights First today welcomed Vladimir Kara-Murza, a preeminent Russian human rights activist and former political leader, as its senior advisor for human rights accountability. In this capacity, Kara-Murza will help shape the organization’s efforts to hold major human rights abusers and corrupt actors accountable via the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act.
Kara-Murza played a key role in the passage of the 2012 Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act, the precursor to the Global Magnitsky Act, and currently works to expand the use of Global Magnitsky-like targeted sanctions programs around the world. In 2015 and 2017 he was poisoned and left in a coma; the attempts on his life were widely viewed as the Russian government’s retribution for his work on the Magnitsky sanctions.
“I’m honored to welcome a human rights activist with Vladimir’s stature and proven track-record to Human Rights First,” said Human Rights First President and CEO Mike Breen. “Vladimir’s courageous and tireless work to expand the reach of targeted human rights and anti-corruption sanctions has put kleptocrats and human rights violators on notice. He will be a huge asset to Human Rights First as we continue to expand our network of partners bringing governments around the world credible, comprehensive information on which to make sanctions determinations.”
A former deputy leader of the Russian People’s Freedom Party and a candidate for the Russian State Duma, Kara-Murza was a longtime colleague of Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov and chairs the Boris Nemtsov Foundation for Freedom. He is a contributing writer at the Washington Post, hosts a weekly show on Echo of Moscow radio, and has worked for the BBC, RTVi, and Kommersant. He has directed three documentary films, They Chose Freedom, Nemtsov, and My Duty to Not Stay Silent, and is the author of Reform or Revolution: The Quest for Responsible Government in the First Russian State Duma.
He has received several awards, including the Sakharov Prize for Journalism as an Act of Conscience, the Magnitsky Human Rights Award, and the Geneva Summit Courage Award. He holds an M.A. (Cantab.) in History from Cambridge.