WASHINGTON, November 19. /TASS/. The Russian Embassy in Washington demanded that persecution of the Russian diaspora by the American side be stopped, following the suspension of the activities of the Russian Community Council in the United States.
"Our position on the abovementioned incidents has been repeatedly communicated to the American authorities. However, officials continue to ignore our calls to guarantee for the community basic rights which are stipulated, among other things, by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. In fact, we are talking about a gross violation of personal freedoms in a country that claims to be titled a "stronghold of democracy." We demand that the persecution of the Russian diaspora representatives be immediately stopped," the embassy wrote on Facebook.
Earlier the Russian Community Council announced that it had suspended its activities in the United States due to an investigation by the American intelligence agencies.
"The decision to suspend activities comes after a year of active and nation-wide FBI measures directed at over 300 Russian community members, from students to seniors, including some members of the Community Council," the organization said.
"We regard these actions as unfriendly towards the Russian Federation. The U.S. authorities are thereby denying emigrants from Russia their right to stay in touch with their historical motherland and take an active part in preserving their own cultural and linguistic heritage. The social activities of our fellow citizens are absolutely open and transparent. Information about events they organize is published on the websites and in social media," the diplomatic mission stressed.
The embassy noted that "an important area of work of the Russian Community Council of the USA is the study of the common pages of history and the role of Russian emigrants in developing the United States and the preservation of the memory of the alliance between our countries during World War II."
"Our compatriots highlight the positive aspects of Russian-American relations with the aim to strengthen mutual understanding between the Russians and the Americans and contribute to the normalization of bilateral ties," the diplomats said.
The FBI, the US State Department and the White House have not yet responded to TASS's request to comment on the suspension of activities of the Russian Community Council.