Moscow to expel 30 US Diplomats, freeze assets

Moscow to expel 30 US Diplomats, freeze assets”

"If the compromise is not found there, we will have to take such measures", a Russian Foreign Ministry official told Russian newspaper Izvestiya, according to The Atlantic correspondent Krishnadev Calamur.

In response to the recent round of U.S. sanctions against Russia, Moscow is planning to strike back by expelling at least 30 American diplomats and seizing USA state property in the country, a senior Kremlin official told Russian newspaper Izvestiya.

Russian president Vladimir Putin decided then against direct retaliation and did not expel American diplomats - a decision that was hailed by President Donald Trump as "a great move". Next week, the problem will be discussed by Ryabkov and Shannon. Russia has called on its partners to check the maps of military facilities and forces in Europe, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said after an informal ministerial meeting of the European security agency OSCE on Tuesday.

Izvestiya also cited Andrey Klimov, a senator in the upper house of Russia's parliament, who said that "Russia had already waited more than six months for the Trump administration to improve the relationship between the two countries" and was now forced to strike back.

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The Kremlin may expel dozens of American diplomats from Russian Federation and freeze some USA assets in response to its seized diplomatic properties in the US.

Later in December, the Russian Foreign Ministry proposed expelling 35 United States diplomats as a tit-for-tat measure, but President Putin rejected the suggestion and called the move by the outgoing Obama administration a provocation. The US ambassador's residence, Spaso House, and the embassy school in St. Petersburg are likely to be left unaffected, however.

In a report published on Tuesday, the pro-Kremlin newspaper Izvestia quoted officials as saying that if the U.S. does not correct a decision by former President Barack Obama on expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats and seizure of Russia's diplomatic compounds, Russia could retaliate in the foreseeable future.

In the meantime, the current United States administration still faces pressure from some parts of the establishment in regard to the Russian diplomatic compounds issue.

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