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Diplomat: Situation with US visa for Russian parliament speaker won't pass without trace

August 27, 2015, 16:40 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Russia’s Foreign Ministry official spokesperson says she has no examples when such policy could be called successful
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Russia’s Foreign Ministry official spokesperson Maria Zakharova

Russia’s Foreign Ministry official spokesperson Maria Zakharova

© TASS/Stanislav Krasilnikov

MOSCOW, August 27. /TASS/. Washington’s stance on visas for Russian parliamentarians looks like an anti-Russian fuss, the Russian Foreign Ministry’s spokeswoman told reporters on Thursday.

Mariya Zakharova said the statements of the American side that Washington was guided by a principled approach when making such decisions seem strange.

"The United States was saying that this was a principled decision, connected with the principled position not to issue visas to people who are on blacklists in connection with the Ukrainian issue. It is strange to speak of any principled approach. At least it is strange for those who know the essence of the story," Zakharova said.

"Visas were issued to some persons on US blacklists - where’s the principled approach here? But in a few weeks, the visas were withdrawn. Where’s the systemic approach here? All this looks like some anti-Russian fuss," she said. "I see nothing principled or systematic here."

Zakharova said the situation over the visa for Russian upper house speaker Valentina Matviyenko will not just pass without a trace.

"Such actions don’t pass without a trace. It places a certain negative trace both on the history of bilateral relations and in general in the history of diplomacy," she said.

"I don’t know why all this is being done, it is hard to assume. Unfortunately, many of our explanations remain unheard by Washington," Zakharova said.

Russian Federation Council speaker Valentina Matviyenko, whose visit to the United States has been disrupted due to visa restrictions over Russia's position on Ukraine, said Thursday there is no reason to hold international events in countries that back sanctions.

Russia’s Foreign Ministry said Wednesday that the visa for Matviyenko contains some "inadmissible" restrictions on the stay in the United States which make the Russian delegation’s planned visit to New York late this month impossible.

Matviyenko was scheduled to attend the 4th world conference of the heads of parliament from the member countries of the Inter-Parliamentary Union, due in New York on August 31 through September 2.

On August 29-30 there will be the 10th meeting of women speakers of parliament. On Wednesday, the United States issued a visa to Matviyenko but set a number of restrictions which the Federation Council speaker and the Russian Foreign Ministry have dismissed as unacceptable. The issued visa allowed Matviyenko to meet with the UN secretary-general but prohibited her participation in the forthcoming conference.

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