Russia Will Not Expel U.S Diplomats in Tit-for-Tat Gesture

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Russia has announced it will not expel diplomats despite the actions of the Obama administration which expelled 35 Russian diplomats yesterday.  The U.S expelled the diplomats after claiming that Russia hacked Democratic Party emails to turn the American electorate in favour of Trump.

In a statement, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Russia would not expel U.S diplomats from its soil.  He said the actions of the U.S were a, “provocation aimed to further undermine Russian-American relations.”

He added, “The Russian diplomats returning home will spend the New Year Holidays with their relatives and dear ones.

“At home, we will not create problems for U.S. diplomats. We will not expel anybody.”

Russia has continuously denied the allegations levelled at it by the U.S.  Earlier today the FBI together with Homeland Security published a detailed document about the hacking of emails from the Democratic Party.  It claims that Russian intelligence actors twice gained access to a U.S political party.  The document also says spearphishing was used to gain access to sensitive information.

The emails in question were published on the Wikileaks website.  Their content is believed to have turned many traditional Democrat voters against the party.

Earlier in the day, Sergey Lavrov suggested that Russia would carry out a tit-for-tat measure against the U.S, expelling ambassadors from the country and barring them from using recreational facilities they and their families enjoy at the moment.

Putin has made it clear that this will no longer happen.

President Obama meanwhile stated that, “All Americans should be alarmed by Russia’s actions. Such activities have consequences.”  He also hinted that a reprisal cyber attack maybe launched against Russia in reprisal.

Despite the sanctions, Trump may roll them back when he takes office.  He has been a strong advocate of better relations with Russia, and dismissed the idea that Russia hacked the emails in the first instance.

It is unlikely the sanctions will affect Russia adversely.

 

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