Embassy of the Russian Federation in the Republic of Botswana
Tel.: (267) 3953-389
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24 september / 2018

Press release on the measures taken by the Russian Federation to enhance the protection, security and safety of diplomatic and consular missions and representatives

The Russian Federation deems it necessary to draw the attention of the international community and take appropriate measures for the following deeply disturbing acts of the Government of the United States of America that are incompatible with their international commitments under the UN Charter and universally recognized norms of international diplomatic and consular law, and that call into question the declared commitment of the U.S. to the principles of justice and the rule of law.

The U.S. Government referring to its sovereign prerogatives and national law from December 2016 to April 2018 took a range of provocative, hostile and coercive measures, unprecedented in their scope and cynicism, against a number of Russian official missions, their property, as well as the missions' staff and their family members. The measures sought to expel Russian official missions, the missions' staff and their family members from the premises they occupied on lawful grounds; to cause damage to the sovereign dignity of the Russian Federation and moral damage to the staff of its official missions; to disrupt the normal functioning of the diplomatic missions and consular establishments of the Russian Federation in the U.S.; and to deny the Russian Federation access to the property it used for sovereign purposes.

The official missions of the Russian Federation and their premises, raided and seized by the U.S. authorities, are listed below.

1. Part of The Embassy of the Russian Federation.

2. The Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the UN in New York.

3. The Consulate General of the Russian Federation in San Francisco.

4. The Trade Representation of the Russian Federation in Washington.

5. The Office of the Trade Representation of the Russian Federation in New York.

6. Consulate General of the Russian Federation in Seattle.

Despite protests by the Russian Federation, State flags of the Russian Federation have been removed from all of the above-mentioned premises.

The Russian Federation also expresses the most serious concern over the fact that the repressive infringements described above, incompatible with the purpose and objectives of the UN Charter, the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of April 18, 1961, the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations of April 24, 1963, and the United Nations Headquarters Agreement between the U.S. Government and the UN of June 26, 1947.

The Russian Federation drew the attention of the UN Secretary General, who on 18 May, 2018 was given a message regarding his report on the agenda item “Consideration of effective measures to enhance the protection, security and safety of diplomatic and consular missions and representatives” to be made to the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly, as well as presented the U.S. Department of State a note of protest of 7 August , 2018 against such interpretation and application of the above-mentioned international instruments and believes that the consequences of the measures taken by the U.S. authorities, which affect international obligations erga omnes, go way beyond the U.S..Russian bilateral relations and are capable of creating an extremely undesirable precedent and causing serious damage to sustainability and stability of the entire system of international relations.

The Russian Federation was therefore forced to take reciprocal measures against a number of the U.S. facilities in the Russian territory that the Russian Federation would prefer to avoid under other circumstances. The Ministry notes that these measures have not been, nevertheless, fully symmetrical so far - because the Russian Federation has not purported to terminate the status of U.S. diplomatic or consular mission premises and has not interfered with the immunities and inviolabilities to which such premises are entitled - and reserves the right to adopt additional countermeasures if the United States continues its violations.

There have already been examples in history when a state dissatisfied with the behavior of another state, arbitrarily, violating the norms of international law, "abolished" its sovereign status by the "right of force", used repressive measures against it. Without exaggeration, we can name the "Munich Agreement" signed on 30 September, 1938, which led to tragic consequences for the whole world .

The Russian Federation is convinced that the above actions of the U.S. authorities require strong condemnation by the United Nations and the entire  international community.

The Embassy of the Russian Federation

in the Republic of Botswana