DIPLOMACY CRISIS: U.S. Expels Russian Embassy Officials

DIPLOMACY CRISIS: U.S. Expels Russian Embassy Officials

Russian President Vladimir Putin. Photo by: RIA Novosti
Russian President Vladimir Putin. Photo by: RIA Novosti

 

The U.S. State Department announced on Friday, 6, the expulsion of two officials from the Russian embassy. The move comes in response to Moscow’s earlier expulsion of two American diplomats.

The American diplomats were accused of collecting confidential information from Russia, a narrative denied by the U.S. government.

The retaliatory expulsions come at a time of heightened tension between the two countries, with Russia continuing its aggression against Ukraine following last year’s invasion.

Meanwhile, the U.S. continues to provide military and financial support to Ukraine to counter the Russian offensive.

In September, State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller warned that the U.S. would respond “promptly” to the expulsion of two American diplomats from Russia.

On September 14, diplomats Jeffrey Sillin and David Bernstein were declared “persona non grata” by Russia, meaning they had to leave the country within a week.

The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs informed U.S. Ambassador Lynne Tracy of the expulsion of the two diplomats. Russia expressed dissatisfaction with the U.S. government’s response.

According to the Russian news agency RIA, an unidentified source from the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed the expulsion of the Russian diplomats and referred to it as “unfounded.”

Russia further stated that Washington used the expulsion of two American diplomats from Moscow on September 14 as a pretext, claiming they were “caught red-handed engaging in espionage activities.”

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Author: Fernando de Castro