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US accused of ignoring Russia human rights abuses

[JURIST] Human rights observers have accused the US of ignoring a deteriorating situation in Russia, including crackdowns on the media and overreach of executive power. Mark Medish, a spokesman for the independent Council on Foreign Relations, told the US Commission on International Religious Freedom [official website; press release] Wednesday that "a democratic government is not a priority" for US-Russian relations and that the Russian government "receives too little engagement and too little criticism generally from this administration". Other commentators complained that while President Bush mentioned the Beslan school hostage crisis [BBC timeline] during the State of the Union address [full text] this week, he neglected to include Russia as a country with problematic human rights conditions. AFP has more.

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