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Alexander F. Yuan / AP

Russian deputy foreign minister, Sergei Ryabkov, told Russian-state media organization TASS that Russia would launch "retaliation measures" if the Trump administration does not return the Russian diplomatic compounds unconditionally, the Washington Examiner reports. This comes after Ryabkov left a meeting with U.S. Undersecretary of State Thomas Shannon on Monday saying they "almost" had a deal worked out.

  • The Obama administration seized the two compounds, one in Maryland and one in New York, last year in response to alleged election interference and it was suspected Russians were orchestrating espionage acts from the properties.
  • Note: The Russian Foreign Ministry has cautioned it could retaliate "tit-for-tat" before, per CNN. This ramps up the pressure.
  • What's next: Deputy Secretary of State John J. Sullivan told Congress last week that if there were a deal, the State Department would "consult" with Congress "before any final implementation."

Go deeper

Bipartisan group of senators unveil $908 billion COVID stimulus proposal

Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) in the Capitol in 2018. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call

A bipartisan group of senators on Tuesday proposed a $908 billion coronavirus stimulus package, in one of the few concrete steps toward COVID relief made by Congress in several months.

Why it matters: Recent data shows that the economic recovery is floundering as coronavirus cases surge and hospitals threaten to be overwhelmed heading into what is likely to be a grim winter.

Inside Patch's new local newsletter platform

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Patch, the hyperlocal (and profitable) local digital news company, has built a new software platform called "Patch Labs" that lets local news reporters publish their own newsletters and websites, sources tell Axios.

Why it matters: It follows a growing trend of journalists going solo via newsletters at the national level.

Scoop: Politico stars plot new Playbook

Anna Palmer and Jake Sherman. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Three of Politico’s biggest reporting stars plan to launch a competitor to the company’s Politico Playbook franchise, sources tell me. 

Why it matters:  Jake Sherman, Anna Palmer and John Bresnahan will launch a daily newsletter in 2021 as a stand-alone company, the sources say. In effect, they will be competing against the Playbook franchise they helped create and grow.