December 1, 2021
I would like to emphasize that the choice is not ours.Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova on expelling some American diplomats.
- The announcement comes Wednesday, ahead of an expected meeting Thursday in Stockholm between Sec. of State Blinken and his Russian counterpart. The reported topic of conversation of this meeting? Russia's military build-up along the Ukrainian border. In the past, Sec. Blinken has made comments that Russia followed a similar plan prior to an invasion of Ukraine.
- Russia says they are responding in kind to an order by the U.S. to expel more than 50 Russian diplomats – 27 of them by January 30, 2021.
- The U.S. made that order – and also imposed sanctions – earlier this year due to Russia's alleged interference in the 2020 presidential elections, hacking campaigns and other "malign" activity.
- According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, American diplomats who have served in Russia for more than 3 years would need to leave Russia by January 31.
Why This Matters: This move only emphasizes the continually tense relations between the two countries.
by Jenna Lee,