Saturday, 23 September, 2017

Russian Federation to decide next week on retaliation against U.S. over compound seizures

Nikita Dezhurny  Flickr  modified by MT Nikita Dezhurny Flickr modified by MT
Saul Franklin | 16 July, 2017, 01:24

"We strongly urge the State Department not to return the diplomatic compounds in Maryland and NY to the Government of the Russian Federation at this time", they wrote.

Former President Barack Obama acted after USA intelligence sources accused Russian Federation of hacking into Democratic Party computers in an attempt to weaken Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. Gorka responded that Trump already pressed Russian President Vladimir Putin on the issue at the G20 Summit and it is now time to move on "because people are dying in Syria, referencing the Syrian ceasefire".

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova confirmed today that the meeting is on, but that Russia may still be forced to take retaliatory action over the diplomatic compounds and numerous other outstanding "irritants" left over from the Obama Administration.

The two compounds were closed down over Russia's alleged interference in the United States presidential election, which Moscow has repeatedly denied. The bill has a slew of anti-Russia provisions in it, a number of which the Trump Administration has already expressed objection to.

On Tuesday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warned Russia was considering reprisals, but kept the details secret.

Tapper came back with his own observation, stating that "we don't dole out rewards to countries because they possess a nuclear weapon", noting that America wouldn't do that with "China and Pakistan".

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"If they don't discontinue this practice, then it will be hard to build relations".

Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper also denounced the notion of returning the compounds last week.

"The seized objects have not been returned".

The US is now denying issuing visas to Russian diplomats waiting to replace those who were expelled, according to Zakharova.

"Attempts are being made to link the unlinkable and beat around the bush when it comes to actual issues", she added. "One of the easy options", she said, would be to demand a reduction in the number of Americans assigned to the U.S. Embassy in Moscow, which she said far exceeds the number of Russians in Washington.

Russia's leadership, including Vladimir Putin, have dismissed time and again the accusations that Moscow meddled in the 2016 United States elections - in spite of the findings announced by the USA intelligence community.

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