Russia Says U.S. Human Rights Abuses Violate ‘Ideals’

Human rights abuses by the U.S. government, including violations of the law of war and disproportionate use of force, are “far from the ideals declared by Washington,” Russia’s Foreign Ministry said.

“The main unresolved problem is the odious prison in Guantanamo Bay,” the ministry said in a report released today on its website. “Violations of international humanitarian rights in military conflict zones continue without end.”

The Obama administration’s effort to close Guantanamo have been blocked by Congress. At the State Department in Washington today, spokesman Mark Toner said the Russian report “can be a useful mechanism” and may be studied.

“We certainly don’t regard it as interference in our internal affairs,” Toner said. He added, “In terms of our human rights record, we’re an open book.”

The U.S. and Russia have had strained relations over issues unrelated to Guantanamo. The two nations have disagreed over the NATO military campaign in Libya and U.S.-led attempts to censure Syria at the United Nations for its crackdown on anti-government protesters.

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin accused U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton of provoking Russian protests against alleged voter fraud following the Dec. 4 parliamentary election.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Abelsky at pabelsky@bloomberg.net

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