Russian Diplomats Leave Three US Properties in Compliance with Order

People are seen on the rooftop at the Consulate General of Russia in San Francisco, California, U.S., September 2, 2017

Russian Diplomats Leave Three US Properties in Compliance with Order

“Russia will no longer be permitted to use these facilities for diplomatic or consular purposes,” the U.S. State Department.

Russian diplomats have left three properties in the United States including the six-story consulate in San Francisco, complying with a U.S. order issued in retaliation for Moscow cutting its diplomatic presence in Russia.

Staff at the San Francisco consulate were seen moving equipment, furniture and small items from the building into minivans and driving away, before coming back for more 20 to 30 minutes later.

A group of men in plainclothes and suits were seen on the roof of the consulate looking around, some wearing rubber gloves.

The closure ordered by the Trump administration of the consulate in San Francisco and two buildings housing Russian trade missions in Washington and New York was the latest in tit-for-tat measures between the two countries.

“Accusations made by the Russian government, including that U.S. officials threatened to break down doors in the relevant properties or that the FBI is clearing the premises, are untrue,” a senior U.S. State Department official said in a statement.

The State Department said the Russian government had complied with the order to shutter those operations by Saturday and said no diplomats were being expelled as result of the closures.

“Russia will no longer be permitted to use these facilities for diplomatic or consular purposes,” the department official said.

In July, the Kremlin ordered the United States to cut its diplomatic and technical staff in Russia by more than half, to 455 people, to match the number of Russian diplomats in the United States, after the U.S. Congress overwhelmingly approved new sanctions against Russia.

Those U.S. sanctions were imposed as punishment for what U.S. intelligence agencies concluded was Moscow’s interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election as well as Russia’s annexation of the Crimea region of Ukraine.

Images posted on social media on Friday showed black smoke billowing from a chimney of the consulate on the hottest day in San Francisco’s recorded history. The smoke prompted speculation that diplomatic staff inside the consulate were burning sensitive documents.

Maria Zakharova, the spokeswoman for the Russian foreign ministry, said the fire was part of a “mothballing.”

Russia’s foreign ministry said on Saturday it had summoned a U.S. diplomat in Moscow to protest what it called plans to conduct searches in Russia’s trade mission complex in Washington, another of the buildings ordered closed.

Images posted on social media on Friday showed smoke and flames visible outside the trade mission building in Washington.

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  1. Ah, Trump’s Rothschild-inspired stupid stuff is finally coming into the fore-play front!

    Russia has finally dumped Trump – probably leaking some Russian Kosher Nostra stuff that we’re seeing.

    Maria Zakharova, where are you when we need you the most? … 😉

  2. The only thing Russia is guilty of is trying to build a couple of pipelines to sell their gas to the EU states. But, Rex Tillerson, and his crew, the not os deep state, are having none of that. This is the reason for the Ukraine coup, and all the ME wars. The Crew hates competition, and would rather call in the Navy, Army, and Airforce to kill all who want to do business in a fair and reasonable way. This is what it has come to. All is out in the open, the goves are coming off the American people remain sleeping. So oince more we are sold a cheap story about Russians rigging our votes. No evidence has been shown to us. Yet we are “rigged” Because of rigged to excite the moronic side of us, and in our somnambulant way we will march locked in step like zombies

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