NEW YORK, August 31. /TASS/. Russian Trade Missions in Washington and New York do not comment on the decision by the U.S. Department of State to close them down by September 2, a well-informed diplomatic source told TASS.
"We haven't received any officials explanations so far," he said.
Earlier on Thursday, the U.S. issued a demand to the Russian government to close down the Constulate General in San Francisco and another two diplomatic facilities, one in Washington and one in New York, saying the move aimed to restore parity in diplomatic relations with Russia.
A senior US Administration official told a news briefing for reporters by telephone the decision implid the Russian Consulate General in San Francisco and the trade missions in Washington and New York. She said along with it the U.S. did not demand that the Russian staff employed at these legations be sent off home.
The specialists from the Consulate General and the two trade missions could continue their tours of duty in the U.S.
On July 28, Moscow offered Washington to slash the number of staff members at the embassy and consulates general in Russia to the level of parity with the number of staff at the Russian diplomatic missions in the U.S. This meant a reduction of the American diplomats and the Russian technical staff to 455 people in all.
President Putin told the Russian State Broadcasting Company on July 30 the U.S. was to cut down its staff by 755 persons, diplomats and technical assistants likewise.
As of August 1, Russia suspended the embassy's use of a warehouse in southern Moscow and a datcha in a park area known as the Silver Forest.