Saturday 17 April 2021 - 10:44

Moscow Retaliates US Move, Orders Diplomats to Leave Country

Story Code : 927698
Moscow Retaliates US Move, Orders Diplomats to Leave Country
In a statement by Russia’s foreign ministry on Friday, Moscow expelled 10 US diplomats and banned eight high-ranking “incumbent and former US high-ranking officials and figures, who have been involved in working out and implementing the anti-Russian policy.”

It also explained that US Ambassador in Moscow John Sullivan was also advised to leave the country for Washington for consultations. 

Under the retaliatory measures, FBI Director Christopher Wray, Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines, US Attorney General Merrick Garland, and Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas are banned from entering the Russian Federation.

The four other American officials who face an entry ban are Director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons Michael Carvajal, Director of the Domestic Policy Council Susan Rice, John Bolton, the former US National Security Advisor, and ex-CIA head Robert James Woolsey.

Furthermore, the Russian foreign ministry explained that it would also terminate the activity in Russia of American funds and NGOs which Moscow believes interfere in Russia’s domestic affairs.

The tit-for-tat measures came just a day after Washington announced economic sanctions against Russia and the expulsion of 10 Russian diplomats in retaliation for what it alleged as election interference, a massive cyber-attack, and other hostile activity.

Under the new sanctions, the US Treasury Department will block American financial institutions from purchasing bonds from the Central Bank of the Russian Federation, the National Wealth Fund of the Russian Federation, or the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation after June 14 and from lending funds to those institutions.

Moreover, Washington is imposing sanctions on six Russian technology companies that it claims work with Russian intelligence operations, as well as 32 individuals involved in Russia’s purported efforts to influence the 2020 election in favor of Donald Trump, the Republican candidate who lost to incumbent President Joe Biden.

The measures are part of an executive order signed by Biden that also leaves open the possibility for the White House to expand the sanctions on Russian sovereign debt.

Although the Kremlin swiftly responded to the latest round of sanctions against Russia, it also left the door open for dialog.

The new measures against the US are part of a broader retaliatory package that has been approved by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Moscow also said the Russian president had yet to decide whether he would take part in a US-led climate summit next week.