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Russia free to send other diplomats to replace expelled ones — Department of State

WASHINGTON, April 4. /TASS/. Russia is free to send personnel to replace 60 diplomats declared persona non grata by the United States in late March, a US Department of State spokesperson told TASS on Tuesday.

"As with similar incidents in the past, the Russian government remains free to request accreditation for vacant positions in its bilateral mission. Any requests for new diplomatic accreditation will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis," the source said.

"The Russian Federation has not informed us that it intends to reduce the total number of personnel allowed in our bilateral Mission," the spokesperson said.

According to the official, the United States assumes that Moscow is ready to accept new US diplomatic personnel to fill the positions of diplomats who have been expelled from Russia.

On March 26, in the wake of the Skripal incident in Salisbury, a number of EU member countries, the United States, Canada and Australia announced the expulsion of Russian diplomats. In particular, Washington expelled 60 diplomatic workers and closed the Russian consulate in Seattle.

Last week, the Russian Foreign Ministry announced retaliatory measures against counties that had expelled Russian diplomats. In particular, Moscow expelled 60 US diplomats and closed the US consulate general in the city of St. Petersburg.