The U. S. has expelled 46 diplomats from the Russian embassy in Washington DC, and two diplomats from the Russian consulate in New York, Ambassador Anatoly Antonov told reporters on Monday.
“This morning at 8 a.m., I was invited to the State Department to meet with Assistant Secretary, Wess Mitchell, who informed me that because of the so-called Skripal case, 48 Russian diplomats and diplomatic workers are
expelled from the U. S.
Antonov said: “This, includes 46 from Washington, two people from our Consulate-General in New York. “And just now, I got additional information that 12 more diplomats are proclaimed persona non grata from our permanent mission to the UN.
“Moreover, on March 30 our Consulate General will be closed in Seattle.”
He said the U.S. government’s decision to expel dozens of Russian diplomats will have a significant impact on the Russian diplomatic mission in the U.S.
He said: “Unfortunately, we already have a bad experience of working in such crisis situations. This [expulsion] will have an impact.
“This is a serious blow to the quantitative and qualitative composition of the Russian embassy in Washington, DC.
“We will take all the necessary measures, of course, in coordination with Moscow and with Moscow’s help, so that Russian citizens can calmly leave the U.S. on the set date.”
Antonov added that the US government is expelling more than half of Russian diplomatic staff working Washington, DC.