US and EU expel scores of Russian diplomats over Skripal attack

asianobserve

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The US and EU have expelled dozens of Russian diplomats in response to the nerve agent attack in the UK.

The US has ordered the expulsion of 60 Russian officials who Washington says are spies, including a dozen based at the United Nations.

EU members Germany, France and Poland are each to expel four Russian diplomats with intelligence agency backgrounds. Lithuania said it would expel three Russian diplomats and ban 44 Russian nationals from entering the country. Ukraine, which is not an EU member, is to expel 13 Russian diplomats.

The UK expelled 23 Russian diplomats in the wake of the poisoning, and Russia responded by ejecting the same number of British diplomats.

The Russian consulate in Seattle is also being closed as part of the US’s package of punitive measures. A senior US official said that the consulate closure and the expulsions would be carried out “in solidarity with our closest allies” in reaction to what he said was “a reckless attempt by the [Russian] government to murder a British citizen and his daughter with a military grade nerve agent”.

A second official said the measures were also intended as a response to a “steady drumbeat of destabilising and aggressive actions” by Moscow against the US and its allies.

Russia promised it would take reciprocal action against Washington. It said the UK had not presented a single fact proving that Moscow was behind the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter, Yulia.

The officials being expelled from the US include 48 in the Russian embassy in Washington and 12 at the Russian mission at the UN, who the US say are spies, engaged in “aggressive collection here in the US”.


US officials said that the spies at the UN were abusing their residence privileges under the UN headquarters agreement. They added that there were over 100 Russian spies in the US and the expulsions would significantly reduce Russian espionage capabilities in the country. The expelled Russians have seven days to leave the country.

The White House had initially been cautious in its response, refusing to blame the Kremlin. Senior officials said the nature of the Russian response to UK allegations held led to the definitive US conclusion that the Kremlin was responsible.

“Russia has had nearly a month to respond but instead of explaining has engaged in the usual obfuscation we have seen in the past,” a US official said.

EU heads of state concluded last week that it was highly likely the Russian state was responsible for the attack. The EU is also looking at coordinated steps to rein back Russian hybrid warfare.

A number of other EU members with strong ties to Russia, notably Austria, Bulgaria, Greece, Italy, Hungary and Spain, are reluctant to do anything practical.

Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, was expected to win the support of her newly formed coalition government to take practical action, even though over the weekend many prominent German politicians called for a rapprochement with Russia, including a suggestion that Putin be invited back to summits of the G7. Russia was expelled from the premier assembly of western economies following the annexation of Crimea in 2014, but still attends the G20.

The divisions within the EU were highlighted by a split at the top of the EU bureaucracy. The EU council president, Donald Tusk, said he was in no mood to congratulate Putin on his re-election as Russian president, but the commission president, Jean-Claude Juncker, sent Putin a note of strong congratulations.

The EU called its ambassador to Moscow for consultations over the weekend.

The UK defence secretary, Gavin Williamson, visiting British troops in Estonia, said the backing for Britain was in “itself a defeat for President Putin”.

Theresa May will report back to MPs on Monday on her efforts to garner international support for an uncompromising approach to Russia. On Wednesday, the House of Commons foreign affairs select committee will hold a special evidence session designed to consider what further steps the government could take to restrict the movement of Putin-linked Russian money in London.

In an attempt to stave off diplomatic expulsions in the US, the Russian embassy in Washington urged the Americans to rein in Downing Street. “In these days, a younger partner needs inspiration and help from over the ocean based on wise restraint,” the embassy said.


https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news...o-expel-russian-diplomats-over-skripal-attack
 

sorcerer

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Just a side show..
Every nation does in its capacity...but since Russia is famous for their plutonium flavored tea, them boys get hot pursuit.

The US has ordered the expulsion of 60 Russian officials who Washington says are spies, including a dozen based at the United Nations.
Draining the Swamp in tandem
:popcorn:
 

nimo_cn

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this is an orchestrated witch-hunt since the very beginning!
 

Razor

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Looks like West is in full-on attack mode against Russia this season.
World cup 2018 is also coming up in a few months.
 

IBRIS

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Just a side show..
Every nation does in its capacity...but since Russia is famous for their plutonium flavored tea.
:popcorn:
this tea should be served to #hafeez Saeed, #masood azhar. Our chaiwala should of thought of this, first thing.
 

The Last Stand

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Looks like West is in full-on attack mode against Russia this season.
World cup 2018 is also coming up in a few months.
They're crowing for Trump to put bigger sanctions on Russia too. He hasn't budged.

Yet.
 

sorcerer

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this tea should be served to #hafeez Saeed, #masood azhar. Our chaiwala should of thought of this, first thing.
If thats the plan, such would have been possible via Afghan allies.
But...terrorism is a hydra when it comes to pakistan..
The permanent fix for that is to make terrorism unaffordable for pakistan and that is what is happening and gaining speed.
chaiwala has thought through it.
 

Tactical Frog

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MH17 = more than 200 European citizens dead
Litvinenko = poisoned with polonium in London
Skripals = attacked with nerve agent in London


Enough is enough
 

Flame Thrower

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MH17 = more than 200 European citizens dead
Litvinenko = poisoned with polonium in London
Skripals = attacked with nerve agent in London


Enough is enough
Would you explain how all these are linked to Russia!?

Thanks in advance.
 

Tactical Frog

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Would you explain how all these are linked to Russia!?

Thanks in advance.


In my far, far away galaxy :

“The missile that downed flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine was transported from Russia, a criminal inquiry revealed Wednesday, as it announced that about 100 people were being investigated for playing "an active role" in the disaster.”

https://www.yahoo.com/news/dutch-led-team-release-initial-mh17-criminal-probe-025510278.html

“He was deliberately poisoned by Andrei Lugovoi and Dmitry Kovtun.


For many years, they have been the two chief suspects. Mr Lugovoi had been in the FSB and the federal protection service, and continued to have strong links to the FSB.

The Russian pair had tried to poison Mr Litvinenko almost a month earlier at a London office of multinational security company, Erinys, the report said.

They knew they were using a deadly poison, but did not know precisely which chemical, it went on.

Both deny killing Mr Litvinenko. They are wanted in the UK for questioning, but Russia has refused to extradite them. “

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-35371344

“Russia was once believed to possess thousands of tonnes of weaponised Novichok varieties and their precursors, according to a 2014 report by the US-based Nuclear Threat Initiative, a non-partisan group working to reduce the threat of weapons of mass destruction.”

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-03-13/novichok-nerve-agents-and-how-theyre-linked-to-russia/9541882
 

Kshithij

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In my far, far away galaxy :

“The missile that downed flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine was transported from Russia, a criminal inquiry revealed Wednesday, as it announced that about 100 people were being investigated for playing "an active role" in the disaster.”

https://www.yahoo.com/news/dutch-led-team-release-initial-mh17-criminal-probe-025510278.html

“He was deliberately poisoned by Andrei Lugovoi and Dmitry Kovtun.


For many years, they have been the two chief suspects. Mr Lugovoi had been in the FSB and the federal protection service, and continued to have strong links to the FSB.

The Russian pair had tried to poison Mr Litvinenko almost a month earlier at a London office of multinational security company, Erinys, the report said.

They knew they were using a deadly poison, but did not know precisely which chemical, it went on.

Both deny killing Mr Litvinenko. They are wanted in the UK for questioning, but Russia has refused to extradite them. “

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-35371344

“Russia was once believed to possess thousands of tonnes of weaponised Novichok varieties and their precursors, according to a 2014 report by the US-based Nuclear Threat Initiative, a non-partisan group working to reduce the threat of weapons of mass destruction.”

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-03-13/novichok-nerve-agents-and-how-theyre-linked-to-russia/9541882
All of this appears to be hocus pocus without any concrete evidence. Obviously, Russia won't extradite people just because UK has suspicions. Otherwise, UK will keep having suspicion about many people and simply demand extradition.

There is simply no evidence against Russia. Deal with it
 

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