Last updated: February 19. 2013 8:58PM - 142 Views

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(AP) Russia has harshly criticized U.S. legislation calling for sanctions against Russian officials accused of human rights violations and warned that it will respond in kind.

The bill, designed to end Cold War-era trade restrictions, was hailed by U.S. businesses worried about falling behind in the race to win shares of Russia's more open market, but its human rights part has enraged the Kremlin.

The so-called Magnitsky act is named after Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, who was arrested by officials he accused of a multimillion-dollar tax fraud. He was severely beaten and died in jail in 2009.

Russia's Foreign Ministry responded to the U.S. Senate vote late Thursday by calling it a show in the theater of the absurd and warning Moscow will respond to the legislation in a similar fashion.

Associated Press
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