This could be a sign Russia is losing patience with the Trump administration
Russia reportedly plans to confiscate US diplomatic property in Moscow and alter the legal status of an Anglo-American school in the country unless Washington returns the Russian diplomatic compounds seized late last year.
Citing unnamed diplomatic sources, Moscow-based daily Kommersant reported Friday that the Kremlin demands the return of the two Russian buildings prior to a potential meeting between President Vladimir Putin and his American counterpart, Donald Trump, at the upcoming G20 summit in Germany in July.
The Russian compounds in Maryland and New York were seized by the former US administration in December 2016 over its allegation of Moscow’s involvement in hacking the US 2016 presidential election.
The former US president, Barack Obama, also ordered the expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats over the hacking accusation despite Moscow’s strong denial.
Moscow, however, did not retaliate against the move, hoping that relations with Washington would improve under incoming President Trump, who had vowed during his presidential campaign to pursue closer ties with Russia.
This is while the Russian daily further cited its sources as stating that if Washington does not act to hand back Russia’s properties, Moscow may then seize a US diplomatic country house in Moscow’s northwestern suburb of Serebryany Bor as well as an American diplomatic warehouse in the Russian capital.
It added that Russian authorities could also complicate life for the Anglo-American school in Moscow by changing its legal status. It did not, however, elaborate what that would mean.
On Thursday, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova announced that Moscow was still awaiting the return of its diplomatic compounds in the US and could take retaliatory measures if it did not happen.
Source: Press TV