Expel Americans from historic Moscow mansion, leader of Russian nationalist party urges
“We have repeatedly proposed using asymmetrical measures. For example, we could reply to the expulsion of our diplomats by depriving the US Embassy in Moscow of the magnificent Spaso House mansion that is currently the US ambassador’s residence. After this, the building could be handed over to the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia,” the head of the Liberal Democratic Party, Vladimir Zhirinovsky, wrote on Telegram on Friday.
In the same post, Zhirinovsky wrote that it is wrong to only react to the hostile actions of other nations.
The comment came after Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov announced that Russia will expel 60 US diplomats and close the US Consulate in St. Petersburg in response to the US’ expulsion of the same number of Russian diplomats and the closure of the Russian Consulate in Seattle.
The wave of expulsions started in mid-March, as Britain announced that it was declaring 23 Russians – all diplomatic staff – persona non grata over the recent poisoning of former spy Sergey Skripal and his daughter Yulia. British authorities allege that Russia has a hand in this poisoning, but all requests from Moscow to provide some evidence to back these claims have so far been rejected.
Earlier, Zhirinovsky commented that the scandal is perhaps an artificial scare to create some kind of “fear factor” to help bring people together in the face of the migrant crisis and looming collapse of the European Union. He also noted that the US was benefitting from EU-Russia tensions by making the US seem more attractive for international investors.