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Obama Sanctions Russia, Expels 35 Diplomats For Meddling In 2016 Election

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Obama Sanctions Russia, Expels 35 Diplomats For Meddling In 2016 Election

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Putin, Obama, Russia, Sanctions

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States expelled 35 Russian diplomats and closed two Russian compounds in New York and Maryland in response to a campaign of harassment against American diplomats in Moscow, a senior U.S. official said on Thursday.

The move against the diplomats from the Russian embassy in Washington and consulate in San Francisco is part of a series of actions announced on Thursday to punish Russia for a campaign of intimidation of American diplomats in Moscow and interference in the U.S. election.

The Obama administration was also announcing on Thursday a series of retaliatory measures against Russia for hacking into U.S. political institutions and individuals and leaking information to help President-elect Donald Trump and other Republican candidates, two U.S. officials said.

Trump, who takes office on Jan. 20, has called for better relations with Russia. It was not clear if he will be able to immediately overturn the measures announced on Thursday.

The Russian diplomats would have 72 hours to leave the United States, the official said. Access to the two compounds, which are used by Russian officials for intelligence gathering, will be denied to all Russian officials as of noon on Friday, the senior U.S. official added.

“These actions were taken to respond to Russian harassment of American diplomats and actions by the diplomats that we have assessed to be not consistent with diplomatic practice,” the official said.

The State Department has long complained that Russian security agents and traffic police have harassed U.S. diplomats in Moscow, and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has raised the issue with Russian President Vladimir Putin and his foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov.

“By imposing costs on the Russian diplomats in the United States, by denying them access to the two facilities, we hope the Russian government reevaluates its own actions, which have impeded the ability and safety of our own embassy personnel in Russia,” the official said.

The U.S. official declined to name the Russian diplomats who would be affected, although it is understood that Russia’s ambassador to the United States, Sergei Kislyak, will not be one of those expelled.

(Reporting by Lesley Wroughton; Editing by Yara Bayoumy and Alistair Bell)

IMAGE: Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) meets with U.S. President Barack Obama on the sidelines. Sputnik/Kremlin/Alexei Druzhinin/via REUTERSRussian President Vladimir Putin (L) meets with U.S. President Barack Obama on the sidelines. Sputnik/Kremlin/Alexei Druzhinin/via REUTERS

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18 Comments

  1. Alexia December 29, 2016

    Remember how liberals wanted proof of illegals voting? Strangely enough they need no proof to believe Russia looked at their corrupt DNC emails…

    Real Americans have spoken. We want our country back. Our jobs were being sent to Mexico and China. Our taxes were being spent on illegals, refugees, and welfare leaches.

    My healthcare is too expensive ($800/month for my family). Time to step away from socialism and let the capitalism work. My car insurance is just $25 per month (Insurance Panda) and my internet is just $30/month from RNC. Let the free market handle health insurance!

    Hillary will look good wearing prion orange rather that those 15k white suits.

    Reply
    1. Aaron_of_Portsmouth December 29, 2016

      “Forgive Alexia Father for Alexia knows not what he/she is talking about.”
      Alexia, do you honestly think Russia is clean re: this matter?
      I suppose you also discount Russian doping in athletic competitions, or that it has never been involved in hacking its neighbors in the Ukraine. Then again, you just may be an ordinary sycophant employed by the Kremlin.

      1. Dominick Vila December 30, 2016

        …and carrying out genocide in Chechnya and Syria…
        As for corrupt DNC e-mails, I wish Alexia would provide some specifics.
        What Alexia does not understand, when it comes to blue collar job losses in the USA is that those lost to outsourcing migrated abroad because of lower labor costs overseas. Is she suggesting that Americans should work for $1 an hour with no benefits? Most importantly, she does not understand, or does not want to consider, the fact that most assembly line work has been lost as a results of robotics, rather than outsourcing to Mexico, Bangladesh, or China. We simply don’t need to number of workers that were needed 50 years ago to assemble a car, an air conditioner, or make a long distance call. When we call Customer Service we no longer talk to a person, we talk to a computer. Alas, the same happened when I called my pharmacy a few minutes ago to fill a couple of prescriptions! We live in a different world, with new challenges that cannot be overcome by imposing tariffs on foreign products or services, or by making threats that cannot be fulfilled without retaliation that would have a negative impact on our economy, and our ability to profit from trade.

        1. Aaron_of_Portsmouth January 1, 2017

          The supporters of Trump and Putin will never be able to provide specifics, except for tailor-made manufactured ones courtesy of sources unknown.
          And the bulk of your comments are spot on insofar as the migration of jobs. Unless the emperor-to-be is able to change the flow of technology away from high-tech positions and staunch the ebbing of manufacturing jobs, and is able to change the mind-set of the entirety of corporations seeking to produce as cheaply as possible and paying less as a result, then those solely reliant on manufacturing and other out-dated forms of employment will be left behind, waiting in lines for hand-outs and food-stamps. Such benefits may dry up as well.

    2. I Am Helpy December 29, 2016

      17 intelligence agencies back the assessment that Russia did this. There is no evidence whatsoever for your racist conspiracy theory, and it’s been investigated multiple times.

    3. Thoughtopsy December 30, 2016

      Congrats on failing to read even basic facts before typing.
      Your ignorance is most amusing.

    4. FireBaron December 30, 2016

      Wow! $30 a month Internet? From the RNC? And they don’t block this notorious Liberal website as polluting your mind? Or maybe they are paying you to Troll?

    5. FireBaron December 30, 2016

      Oh, yeah, why don’t you ask your orange-headed Icon where all the schlock that bears his name made? I’ll answer – China, Indonesia, Vietnam, Pakistan, Bangladesh, etc.The only things made here were the “Make America Great Again” hats, after they found the initial batch came from China!

      1. charleo1 December 30, 2016

        Hell, he don’t care about Trump’s lying, offshoring, and tax dodging. Hillary going to jail? Now there’s something that pops his cork, and gets his motor running. Plus, he’s a “Real American,” he wants you to know. Another thing that is at the very top of his priority list.

    6. charleo1 December 30, 2016

      And you no doubt speak for millions and millions of the American voting public. Further advancing my theory, that we as a people have become a majority just too damned stupid to handle our business. As others anxiously await their turn to handle it for us….Starting this January.

    7. Karen December 30, 2016

      When it comes to health care, capitalism is working just fine hence the the high cost of your insurance premiums. As long as your health care remains privatized without regulation you can expect the cost of your insurance premiums to continue to rise. And companies will continue to pass the rising costs on to their employees in seeking their own profits. That shouldn’t be too hard to understand. Perhaps you’ve yet to have a major illness that runs into the hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars , but at some point in the future you may understand

  2. Aaron_of_Portsmouth December 29, 2016

    Good job—Russia deserves a stronger and unified rebuke in the strongest of terms from nations across the world, and this is mild compared to what Russia deserves.

    Reply
  3. Paragryne December 30, 2016

    Prediction: Trump will issue a statement that he will bring back 35 jobs that Obama just sent overseas.

    Reply
    1. Sylviacroberts December 30, 2016

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    2. charleo1 December 30, 2016

      I’m expecting Trump will not only bring these diplomats back, But give them a ticker tape parade down 5th Avenue! I mean why not? It’s what he does.

  4. Dominick Vila December 30, 2016

    Let me start by saying that spying, influencing public opinion at home and abroad, and meddling in the internal affairs of other countries, is not new, and it is not limited to Russia or China. Alas, the champion of invasions/crusades, regime changes, and spying is none other than the USA. The issue this time is that at least one of our foes is doing to us what we have been doing to them. Most importantly, what just happened reveals vulnerabilities that we are not prepared to remedy immediately, and that could go well beyond brainwashing the gullible.
    Having said all this, we simply cannot afford to let Russia, or anyone else, interfere in our elections, and implicitly impose their preferences on what most Americans prefer. Sanctions is the least that can be done to retaliate against what just happened. Unfortunately, our President-elect already stated, publicly, that it is time to move on. In other words, forget what happened, let the big bear from the East do its thing, and accept the consequences of their meddling in the internal affairs of the USA. After all, they did it for a good cause…:-(

    Reply
    1. charleo1 December 30, 2016

      A little intelligence about these things out of the American public would certainly be nice. And go a lot further than sanctions in discouraging the Russians from injecting themselves into our electoral process. But that kind of thing unfortunately just cannot be legislated, or taught either. Evidently… So as long as this kind of skullduggery continues to work as well as it did the last time, Heck, I see no end in sight to the opportunities for foreign entities of all manner and type, or foreign companies, or just your regular run of the mill, terrorist groups anywhere to influence our leadership choices for fun, and profit into perpetuity. Underpinning my latest insulting hypothesis. That the American people have at last become too dumb to have a democracy. And pretty soon won’t.

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