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US ambassador asks Russia not to close the embassy

Despite the crisis generated by the war in Ukraine, Russia should not close the US embassy since the world’s two largest nuclear powers must continue to communicate, the US ambassador to Moscow was cited as saying on Monday.


President Vladimir Putin has characterised the invasion of Ukraine as a watershed moment in Russian history, describing it as a struggle against US imperialism, which he claims has humiliated Russia since the demise of the Soviet Union in 1991.


Ukraine – and its Western backers – claim they are fighting for survival against a rash imperial-style land grab that has killed thousands of people, displaced more than 10 million people, and turned large swaths of the nation into desolation.


In a blatant attempt to send a message to the Kremlin, President Donald Trump’s envoy, John J. Sullivan, told Russia’s state news agency TASS that Washington and Moscow should not just terminate diplomatic relations.


In an interview with TASS, Sullivan said, ‘We must retain the ability to speak to each other.’ He warned against removing Leo Tolstoy’s works off Western book shelves or refusing to perform Pyotr Tchaikovsky’s music.


TASS reported on his comments in Russian, and Reuters translated them into English.


Despite the Cold War’s crises, spy scandals, and brinkmanship, relations between Moscow and Washington have remained intact since the US established diplomatic relations with the Soviet Union in 1933.


Russia, on the other hand, has declared that its post-Soviet affair with the West is done and that it will shift eastwards.


Last month, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken joked that he would like Taylor Swift’s “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” to be dedicated to Putin.


‘We will never break up totally,’ Sullivan replied when asked about the remark.


“They can – there is that possibility,” Sullivan said when asked by TASS if the analogy meant the embassies could be closed. “However, I think it would be a big mistake.”


‘As far as I can tell, the Russian government has broached the possibility of cutting diplomatic relations. We can’t suddenly cut diplomatic ties and cease communicating with each other,’ he stated.


Russia’s foreign ministry has summoned the Moscow bureau heads of American news organisations to address the ramifications of the US’ hostile actions on Monday.


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