MOSCOW, May 21 (Xinhua) -- Russia on Wednesday called groundless the extension of the so-called Magnitsky List drawn by the United States, and vowed to retaliate.
"We do not leave sanctions rampage against Russia unanswered," the Foreign Ministry's human rights envoy Konstantin Dolgov said in a statement.
Moscow will introduce restrictions on U.S. citizens in line with reciprocal principles as well as fairness, he said, adding that Russia would sanction those who have avoided punishment by Washington for human rights violations, including those committed against Russian citizens.
Dolgov pointed out "numerous" cases of human rights violations in the United States, citing the Guantanamo prison as an example.
Washington on Tuesday added 12 more Russians to the Magnitsky List, freezing their financial assets in U.S. banks and barring Americans from doing business with them.
Dolgov accused Washington of attempting to use "human tragedy" - - death of the Russian lawyer -- for "dirty political goals," adding the United States demonstrated false care of late Sergei Magnitsky who died in detention in 2009.
U.S. Treasury Department, which announced the action, did not directly link it with the confrontation between Washington and Moscow over the Ukraine crisis.
The United States passed the Magnitsky Act in 2012, targeting Russian citizens allegedly responsible for the death of Magnitsky, including prison doctors, the judge who oversaw his posthumous trial and a banker alleged to have masterminded the conspiracy Magnitsky uncovered.
U.S. State Department has earlier placed 18 Russians on a public list. In 2013, a Russian court convicted Magnitsky of tax evasion, four years after his death.