The move comes as on Thursday US President Barack Obama’s administration ordered the expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats, the closure of two Russian diplomatic compounds and new sanctions against six Russian individuals and five entities over Moscow’s alleged interference in the 2016 election.
Later on Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that the US diplomats won’t be expelled from Russia in response, saying that Obama’s punitive measures were provocations aimed at further undermining of US-Russian relations.
“We received 35 invitations to the Kremlin for the Elka. Unfortunately, we do not comment on personal plans of our staff,” the US embassy’s press service said.
In October, US intelligence officials claimed they were confident the Russian government had been involved in the hacking of email accounts of the members of the Democratic Party.The Russian Foreign Ministry has denied any interference in the US election and called such accusations absurd and unfounded.