Russia President, Vladimir Putin has said that Russia will not expel any U.S diplomats as a retaliation to same action taken against it by the U.S President, Barrack Obama.
Recall that Russia’s Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov had, in a report by the country’s News agency, TASS, made a declaration early Friday that Russia had equally expelled 35 U.S diplomats in retaliation to its 35 diplomats expelled from U.S by Obama.
However, in a recant statement by the Russian President, Putin said, “We will not expel anyone.”
Obama had expelled the Russian diplomats saying the actions were “in response to Russia’s malicious cyber activity and harassment.
“Today, I have ordered a number of actions in response to the Russian government’s aggressive harassment of U.S. officials and cyber operations aimed at U.S. election.
“These actions follow repeated private and public warnings that we have issued to the Russian government, and are a necessary and appropriate response to efforts to harm U.S. interests in violation of established international norms of behaviour.
“The U.S State Department is also shutting down two Russian compounds, in Maryland and New York, used by Russian personnel for intelligence-related purposes, and is declaring ‘persona non grata’ on 35 Russian intelligence operatives.”
However, in what seemed like a retaliation, the Russian Foreign Minister had declared that “We, of course, cannot leave unanswered the insults of the kind, reciprocity is the law of diplomacy and foreign relations,” Lavrov said.
“Thus, the Russian Foreign Ministry and officials of other authorities have presented to the Russian president suggestions regarding announcing persona non grata 31 personnel of the US Embassy in Moscow and four diplomats from the Consulate General in St. Petersburg.”
Lavrov also said that “The outgoing US administration of Barack Obama accusing Russia of all mortal sins, trying to blame us for the failure of its foreign policy initiatives, among other things, has put forward additional accusations without any grounds whatsoever that the Russian state was behind attempts to meddle in the US election campaign, which led to the defeat of the democratic candidate.”