29 March 201820:27

Press release on Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov’s meeting with US Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman

598-29-03-2018

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On March 29, US Ambassador Jon Huntsman was summoned to the Foreign Ministry where Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov handed him a note on the US authorities’ outrageous and groundless demands for 60 Russian diplomats to leave the United States and to shut down the Russian Consulate General in Seattle as well as on the US authorities’ intention to seize its building after the seizure of another five buildings in the US belonging to Russia in 2016–2017.

In response, and based on the principle of reciprocity, 58 diplomatic staff at the US Embassy in Moscow and two employees at the US Consulate General in Yekaterinburg have been declared persona non grata for activities incompatible with their diplomatic status. They are to leave Russia before April 5, 2018.

The agreement to open the US Consulate General in St Petersburg has been revoked. US representatives must vacate the administrative building granted for the mission by March 31.

We have demanded that Jon Huntsman explain his public statements on the possible seizure of Russian government assets in the United States. The US has been warned that the implementation of this threat will lead to a serious deterioration in bilateral relations, which will result in dire consequences for global stability.

In addition, the ambassador has been warned that in case of further hostile actions against Russian diplomatic missions and consulates in the United States, Russia will take additional measures against the personnel and property of the US Embassy and consulates general in Russia. It is recommended that the US authorities, who are promoting and encouraging this defamation campaign against Russia, come to their senses and stop their unreasonable actions aimed at destroying bilateral relations.

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