Russia has decided to expel two senior U.S. diplomats, who are accused of carrying out activities “incompatible with their diplomatic status,” the foreign ministry said Thursday.
U.S. Ambassador to Russia Lynne Tracy was summoned to the ministry, where she was given a note informing her of the activities being carried out by the two diplomats.
According to a statement by the ministry, the first secretary of the U.S. embassy, Jeffrey Sillin, and the second secretary, David Bernstein, are accused of “conducting illegal activities,” by communicating with Russian citizen Robert Shonov, who was previously charged with “confidential cooperation” with a foreign state and carrying out assignments “aimed at harming Russia’s national security.”
Therefore, Sillin and Bernstein have been declared personae non gratae and been instructed to leave Russia within seven days, said the ministry.
The “illegal activities of the U.S. diplomatic mission,” including the interference in international affairs, “are unacceptable,” and will be “resolutely suppressed,” stated the ministry.