The Russian Foreign Ministry said Friday that it has expelled 10 U.S. diplomats and banned eight high-ranking current and former officials from entering Russia for their "involvement in the implementation of the anti-Russian course."
The measures are a part of a broader retaliatory package approved by President Vladimir Putin, including curbs to its sovereign debt market.
The U.S. announced a raft of sanctions against Russian on Thursday in addition to the expulsion of 10 of its diplomats, saying that its own sanctions were payback for Russia interfering in last year's U.S. election, cyber hacking, bullying Ukraine and other alleged malign actions.
Russia has denied all the U.S. allegations.
Russia's banning list includes U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland, Director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons Michael Carvajal, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas, Domestic Policy Adviser to the U.S. President Susan Rice, Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation Christopher Wray, Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines, Former National Security Adviser to the U.S. President John Bolton, and Former Director of the Central Intelligence Agency James Woolsey.
"Now is the time for the United States to demonstrate good sense and to turn its back on a confrontational course," the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
"Otherwise an array of painful decisions for the American side will be implemented."
U.S. President Joe Biden on Thursday proposed a summit with Putin in Europe this summer, saying that he hopes the United States and Russia could launch "a strategic stability dialogue to pursue cooperation in arms control and security."
Relations between Washington and Moscow have been adversarial in recent years. The two are bitterly divided over Ukraine, human rights and cybersecurity issues, and they mutually accuse the other of domestic political interference.
VOL. 16, No. 14, March.10, 2023 (Falgun 26. 2079) Publisher and Editor: Keshab Prasad Poudel Online Register Number: DOI 584/074-75
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