In July, Moscow ordered the United States to cut the number of its diplomatic and technical staff working in Russian Federation by around 60%, to 455, part of a diplomatic row, Reuters reported.
"As current geopolitical realities become tougher, when the United States start an unprecedented enlargement of anti-Russian sanctions and fixed this move in the form of a law it would be very logical from our side to introduce some counter-measures", he added.
Russian flags were removed from the Russian consulate general in San Francisco by USA authorities, according to a State Department official.
The Russian Embassy to the United States said on its Russian-language Twitter account that flags were "stolen" from the building, and called it "the latest shameful event" in a series of tit-for-tat diplomatic reprisals between the countries this year.
Russia's Foreign Ministry has issued a statement of protest after American authorities reportedly took down several Russian flags from a seized consulate in San Francisco.
"Such steps only complicate US-Russian dialogue", he said in televised remarks. Moscow also demanded that the United States cut the numbers of its diplomatic and technical staff to 455 people - the number of Russian personnel at USA diplomatic missions and in the UN headquarters in the New York City.
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The U.S. State Department denied that the flags were stolen. "We demand an immediate return our state symbols to their place and prevents such incidents in the future".
Commenting on the situation, a US Department of State official told that Russian flags were "respectfully" lowered by US officials at former Russian properties in Washington, DC and San Francisco, when the buildings were closed.
A U.S. Department of State official told Sputnik that Russian flags were "respectfully" lowered by USA officials at former Russian properties in Washington, DC and San Francisco, when the buildings were closed.
He pledged that the State Department is responsible for the safety of these facilities and is maintaining them in due condition.
On October 2, representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation reported that the Americans had fully occupied the premises of the Russian Consulate General in San Francisco, including the residence of the Consul General.
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