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Moscow doubts likelihood of fair decision by US court in diplomatic property lawsuit

Moscow will file diplomatic property lawsuit with the US court soon, according to the Russian deputy foreign minister

MOSCOW, September 8. /TASS/.  Russia is aware that achieving a fair ruling in a US court regarding Russian diplomatic property in the United States will be very hard, but at the same time it believes this is a realistic way of tackling the problem, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said.

"We are aware that in a situation like this, within the existing legal framework and in the political climate that our adversaries in the United States have created over the past months and years it would be very hard the pronounce the sole correct and fair decision in our favor," Ryabkov said. "At the same time this is a realistic way and we will proceed in this direction."

A lawsuit will be filed in the near future, in accordance with the instructions issued by Russian President Vladimir Putin, Ryabkov said.

"This will happen in the immediate future," he said. "The issue is quite serious. We need to get ready properly, and that’s precisely what we are doing."

Moscow insists that the presence of US special services personnel in the Russian Consulate General in San Francisco should be described as "occupation." 

"We insist that if someone is present in a building without the legitimate owner’s consent - it is occupation," Ryabkov said.

"This term refers not only to some big conflicts and military activities, but also to the actions that the Americans have carried out," Ryabkov said. "We will continue to insist on that. We have informed the US, too," he added.

The Foreign Ministry believes that Washington has sent a warning to all other countries that have diplomatic missions in the US by its actions towards the Russian diplomatic property.

"We believe that, apart from a new strike over Russian-American relations, Americans have sent a warning to the rest of the world that such things may happen to diplomats and consular employees if the American side wishes so," the deputy foreign minister said.

"This is a warning sign," Ryabkov stressed.