Russia to expel 10 U.S diplomats, ban top Biden officials in response to sanctions
Russia will expel 10 U.S. diplomats and add eight current and former U.S. officials to its no-entry list in retaliation for sanctions that the Biden administration leveled at Moscow on Friday, Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov said Friday.
Why it matters: The measures come after the U.S. said it would expel 10 Russian intelligence officers operating under diplomatic cover, as part of a broad package of sanctions retaliating against the SolarWinds hack of federal agencies and Russia's interference in the 2020 election.
Details: The following Americans have been banned from Russia ...
- Attorney General Merrick Garland
- Bureau of Prisons Director Michael Carvajal
- Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas
- White House domestic policy czar Susan Rice
- FBI Director Christopher Wray
- Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines
- Former White House national security adviser John Bolton
- Former CIA Director Robert James Woolsey Jr.
The big picture: In addition to expelling 10 Russians on Thursday, the U.S. sanctioned dozens of Russian officials and entities and set new restrictions on buying Russian sovereign debt.
- "The United States is not looking to kick off a cycle of escalation and conflict with Russia. We want a stable, predictable relationship," Biden said in a speech on Thursday afternoon, warning Russia not to continue interfering U.S. elections.
- Biden has proposed meeting Russian President Vladimir Putin for a summit in a European country this summer "to find a stable and predictable way forward," according to a senior administration official. It's unclear whether Putin will accept.
What to watch: Lavrov said at a press conference that the Kremlin is considering imposing "painful" costs on U.S. businesses operating in Russia in retaliation for the sanctions, per Reuters.