Russia asks 755 US diplomats to leave country following American sanctions
Putin's statement follows US Senate's approval of a bill to toughen sanctions on Russia for allegedly meddling in the 2016 US presidential election and for its annexation of Crimea in 2014.
Russian President Vladimir Putin on 30 July 2017 asked 755 US diplomats to leave the country. The action was taken three days after the US Congress approved sanctions against Russia.
Earlier, the US Senate approved a bill to toughen sanctions on Russia for allegedly meddling in the 2016 US Presidential election and for its annexation of Crimea in 2014.
Putin in an interview to a Russian TV channel said, more than 1000 people are working at the US embassy and consulates in Russia. He said 755 of them should stop their activities and return.
While announcing his decision, Putin said Russia had run out of patience waiting for relations with the United States to improve.
In addition, the Russian Foreign Ministry on 28 July 2017 demanded that Washington should cut its diplomatic presence in Russia to 455 by September; the same number Moscow has in the US.
The Russian President also said that an upturn in Moscow's relations with Washington could not be expected anytime soon.
Comment: It seems that the US sanctions and Russian announcement asking US diplomats to leave Russia will increase tensions between the Moscow and Washington.