The Russian Embassy in the US responded to state Department statement on expulsion of diplomats
WASHINGTON, 10 Aug — RIA Novosti. Russia would not have to reduce the number of American diplomats, if previously there has been no action from Washington, said on Thursday the press-service of the Russian Embassy in the United States.
In connection with the regret expressed by state Department spokesman (Heather) Nauert at his briefing on August 9 in reducing the Russian side of the staff of the American diplomatic missions in Russia, I would like to note the following. If it were not for the expulsion of Russian diplomats and the closure of access to Russian departmenet in the United States by the previous administration, as well as sanctions of the law passed already under the current administration, we wouldn’t have to resort to these measures. The exchange of “shots” — not our choice,” — said in a statement.
It was emphasized that Russia “is also in favour of improving bilateral relations and exploring areas of cooperation”.
“However, this must be done not based on pressure, and on the basis of each other’s interests and mutual respect”, — stated in the document.
Earlier the President of Russia Vladimir Putin said that the staff of the U.S. mission in Russia is the same as the staff of the Russian Embassy in America by 455 people on each side. According to him, the 755 employees of the American Embassy will have to cease operations.
The Russian foreign Ministry on 28 July offered the US until September 1 to change the number of employees of the diplomatic mission. In addition, Russia from August 1 stopped the use of the U.S. Embassy in Russia warehouse space on a Traffic street in Moscow and the Embassy dacha in Serebryany Bor. According to the statement of the foreign Ministry, these measures were a response to anti-Russian policy adopted by the us Congress of the new anti-Russian sanctions.