Science

Russia Warns US It Could Expel Americans Over Diplomatic Dispute

Russia Warns US It Could Expel Americans Over Diplomatic Dispute

Zakharova also added that the United States refuses to issue visas to Russian diplomats slated to replace embassy staff expelled in December.

"If the USA partners do not understand differently, we will at some point have to act in this direction", Zakharova said at a weekly briefing, noting that a "long pause" on the issue has "dragged on".

She said Moscow's course of action would depend on the outcome of a meeting in Washington on July 17 between Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov and U.S. Undersecretary of State Thomas Shannon.

Russia could expel more than 35 Americans, Ms. Zakharova said, making sure that the same number of diplomats work in the United States Embassy in Moscow and the Russian Embassy in Washington.

One possible retaliatory measure would be to reduce staff levels at the US embassy in Moscow to those of the Russian embassy in Washington, she said.




"The seized compounds have not been returned yet", Ms. Zakharova said, as translated by TASS, a state-owned newswire.

In December 2016, President Barack Obama introduced a sanctions package that contains a measure barring access to two diplomatic compounds in use by the Russian Embassy in Washington and Russia's Permanent Mission to the United Nations in NY. "One of our options, apart from a tit-for-tat expulsion of Americans, would be to even out the numbers".

Chuck Schumer's obstructionism is a de-facto government shutdown MORE (N.Y.) urged a senior State Department official in a letter not to return the compounds.

President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed the two compounds at the Group of 20 summit last week, but were unable to reach a final agreement.

Putin has not yet taken any decisions on retaliatory measures, Peskov said.


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