A new scandal erupted between the United States and Russia over visas: what happened
Russian Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov said that in recent days the Russian Federation has issued 22 visas to employees of the American embassy in the Russian capital. And in response, the States issued a visa to the Minister-Counselor. He noted that the United States regards this measure as a major concession, with which Moscow does not agree. The edition told in more detail Lenta.Ru.
According to Antonov, attempts to sell "empty air" to Russia will not work. “So we expect from the State Department a constructive approach to solving the problems of Russian diplomatic missions,” the ambassador said.
Expulsion reports of diplomats
On Monday, August 2, it became known that the United States decided to expel from the country Russian diplomatic workers whose visa expires. They are told to leave the country before September 3. According to Antonov, the United States is consistently putting pressure on the Russian diplomatic mission, trying to reduce the presence of Russian representatives in the country.
The head of the press service of the State Department, Ned Price, clarified that the interpretation of the situation with the requirement for diplomats to leave the country, which Antonov gave, was inaccurate. He explained that the three-year visa validity limit for Russians is not new.
“The three-year limitation of the visa validity period for Russians is not new. When the visa expires, as expected, these persons must leave the country or apply for an extension of the visa. And so it happens, "- explained Price, writes "European truth".
In response, the Russian ambassador said that the Russians are acting strictly in accordance with the rules of the host country. In addition, he said that the embassy staff send documents to the State Department in advance, strictly on time, but "reactions are zero."
He claims that the US has “strongly encouraged 24 of our colleagues” to leave the United States by September 3, 2021.
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The diplomat recalled that about 60 employees with their families are awaiting a decision on the visa requests submitted to the State Department, some for more than a year since May 2020.
Complicating the work of diplomats
On August 1, the United States began to bring the composition of its diplomatic missions in accordance with the new requirements of the Russian government. In particular, Washington cannot hire Russians and third-country nationals to work at American embassies and consulates.
Commenting on the current situation, US Ambassador to Russia John Sullivan noted that due to these measures, the number of diplomatic missions in the country will be reduced to 120 people. This will lead to the fact that they will not be able to provide consular services in full.
As ForumDaily wrote earlier:
- Thursday, April 23, Putin signed a decree according to which the embassies of states "committing unfriendly actions" against Russia will be limited in the right to hire Russian citizens.
- The decree was issued against the backdrop of deteriorating relations between the Russian Federation and the United States, a number of European countries, as well as the diplomatic conflict with the Czech Republic, whose authorities suspected Russia of involvement in the explosions of ammunition depots in 2014 , and announced the expulsion of Russian diplomats. In response, Moscow also expelled employees of the Czech embassy.
- In April, the President of the United States Joe Biden imposed new sanctions against Russia stating that it is a response to cyberattacks and attempts to interfere in the 2020 presidential election.
- Thereafter Washington and Moscow exchanged expelled diplomats.
- Among other things, the Russian Foreign Ministry recommended that US Ambassador John Sullivan leave for Washington "for consultations." Sullivan initially refused to leave Russia, but on April 22 it became known that he flew to the USA.
- Earlier RF closed the US Consulate in Vladivostok, and the diplomatic mission in Yekaterinburg stopped serving US citizens and stopped issuing visas. That is, except at the Moscow Embassy, Russian citizens have nowhere else to obtain a visa to enter the United States, and citizens of the United States have nowhere else to turn for help.
- And on April 30 it became known that USA stopped issuing visas in Moscow, after which the Russians have nowhere else to get them.
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