In December, Barack Obama expelled some 35 Russian “diplomats” and ordered two of their compounds, one on Maryland’s Eastern Shore and another in New York City, seized.
In July, Russia ordered the United States to reduce US staffing by some 750 persons, bringing the US and Russia diplomatic missions to about the same size, and seized two US diplomatic properties.
In August, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said he’d respond to the Russian move by September 1. Watch the video of his remarks here.
Today, the State Department ordered Russia to close three diplomatic facilities by Saturday. They are the Russian consulate in San Francisco, the chancery annex in Washington, DC, and a consular annex in New York City. This is the official statement:
The State Dept is ordering Russia to close its Consulate General in San Francisco, a chancery annex in DC, & a consular annex in NYC by 9/2 pic.twitter.com/5kH0vxgKKW
— Natasha Bertrand (@NatashaBertrand) August 31, 2017
Note that no personnel were expelled.
This brings both nations into parity in terms of diplomatic staff and numbers of consulates.
Hopefully, this nonsense will stop but I’m not betting on it.