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Russian Foreign Ministry Disputes Alleged Use of Force Against US Diplomat

© AFP 2023 / JOEL SAGETCars drive past the Russian Foreign Ministry building in Moscow on May 5, 2016.
Cars drive past the Russian Foreign Ministry building in Moscow on May 5, 2016. - Sputnik International
The Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman disputed media claims of a US diplomat being allegedly attacked by a Russian security guard in Moscow this month.

The White House is viewed from Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington. - Sputnik International
US Concerned About Diplomats Harassment in Missions Around World
MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova disputed on Thursday media claims of a US diplomat being allegedly attacked by a Russian security guard in Moscow this month, arguing instead that it was the diplomat who assaulted the guard.

"There has been an attack on a police officer performing his duties, which is confirmed in video recordings from surveillance cameras, which have long been sent to the State Department. In addition, when it became known that the assailant was a US diplomat, the Russian Foreign Ministry lodged a strong protest to the US Embassy," Zakharova said.

The spokeswoman recounted an early morning June 6 incident described in The Washington Post on Wednesday, saying that the attack took place after the assailant with a hat pulled over his face – who darted toward the US embassy entrance after arriving by taxi – refused to provide identification.

"The Russian police officer on duty wanted to check the suspicious person’s documents to ensure there was no threat to the diplomatic mission, but instead of providing his identity, he struck the guard with his elbow. In the ensuing scuffle, the stranger pushed the security guard and fled inside the embassy," she said.

Zakharova further argued in response to an inquiry published on the ministry website that the US diplomat was a CIA agent who was returning from an intelligence operation that night.

"Whether he was too nervous because of this or just wanted to pass by unrecognized, he did not show his diplomatic card, and resorted to violence when he was stopped," she observed.

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