Russia’s foreign ministry has summoned a U.S. diplomat in Moscow to hand him a note of protest over plans to conduct searches in Russia’s trade mission complex in Washington, which should soon be closed, the ministry said in a statement on Saturday.
It said it has summoned Anthony F. Godfrey, a deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow. The ministry called the planned “illegal inspection” of Russian diplomatic housing an “unprecedented aggressive action”, which could be used by the U.S. special services for “anti-Russian provocations” by the way of “planting compromised items”.
The closure by Sept. 2 of the consulate and buildings in Washington and New York that house Russian trade missions is the latest in tit-for-tat actions by the two countries that have helped push relations to a new post-Cold War low. The Kremlin has said the moves to close the Russian facilities pushed bilateral ties further into a dead end.