President Trump officially expelled over 60 Russian agents Monday morning; shuttering a Seattle consulate and booting the Kremlin-backed diplomats over Vladimir Putin’s illegal assassination plot on British soil last week.
The United States and its European allies announced the joint decision in response to Russia’s use of a deadly nerve agent to eliminate a former spy earlier this month; the first use of a chemical weapon on European soil since the end of the Second World War.
According to Yahoo News, the diplomats will have just seven days to leave the US.
“With these steps, the United States and our allies and partners make clear to Russia that its actions have consequences,” said a statement from White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
The move comes just days after the United Kingdom expelled 23 Russian agents from its borders; following a heated exchange between British Prime Minister Theresa May and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The Russian government denies any responsibility for the attack; demanding to see evidence from British officials.
RUSSIAN ROULETTE: Putin to EXPEL UK Diplomats After British POISON PLOT
The Russian government fired-back at the United Kingdom following the expulsion of 23 Kremlin diplomats from the UK; announcing their decision to remove British officials from Russia as tensions between the two nations reach their highest levels since the Cold War.
According to Reuters, Putin plans to announce his decision after British Prime Minister Theresa May formally accused the Kremlin of the illegal assassination plot; using banned nerve agents to murder a former spy in a quiet English town.
It was the first known use of chemical weapons in Europe since the Second World War.
“Russia is set to expel British diplomats in retaliation for Prime Minister Theresa May’s decision to kick out 23 Russians as relations with London crashed to a post-Cold War low over an attack involving a military-grade nerve agent on English soil,” writes Reuters.
Putin’s announcement comes hours after leaders of the United States, United Kingdom, France, and Germany slammed the Russian government for its role behind the illegal assassination plot; labeling the attack “abhorrent” to the international community.
SPY GAMES: Soviet Nerve Agent PUMPED Into TARGET’S CAR in UK Poison Plot
The soviet-era nerve agent used in Russia’s stunning assassination plot against a former spy was reportedly pumped into the target’s car through the air conditioning vents; further signaling the attack was the work of sophisticated, Kremlin-backed agents.
According to the Fox News, the deadly toxin known as ‘Novichok’ was pumped into 66-year old former Russian spy Sergei Skripal’s BMW. Skripal and his daughter were found blocks away, slumped over on a park bench.
The use of a chemical agent on European soil -the first time since the Second World War- sparked a diplomatic fallout between the UK and Russia; with Prime Minister Theresa May expelling 23 Kremlin diplomats after Vladimir Putin refused to take responsibility for the deadly attack.
The UK’s armed forces and local police are stilling scrambling to secure the quiet English town where the incident occurred; warning locals to “remain indoors” as they struggle to determine if the agent still poses a health risk to neighboring residents.
The leaders of the US, UK, France, and Germany released a scathing statement regarding the plot last week, calling the attack an “assault on UK sovereignty.”
“This use of a military-grade nerve agent, of a type developed by Russia, constitutes the first offensive use of a nerve agent in Europe since the Second World War,” said the letter. “It is an assault on UK sovereignty and any such use by a State party is a clear violation of the Chemical Weapons Convention and a breach of international law. It threatens the security of us all.”