He admits that such steps could harm Russian interests as well
MOSCOW — President Vladimir Putin said the United States would have to cut its diplomatic staff in Russia by 755 people and that Moscow could consider additional measures against Washington as a response to new US sanctions approved by Congress.
“The personnel of the US diplomatic missions in Russia will be cut by 755 people and will now equal the number of the Russian diplomatic personnel in the United States, 455 people on each side,” Putin said.
The new US sanctions were partly a response to conclusions by US intelligence agencies that Russia allegedly meddled in the US presidential election last year.
Denouncing the latest “unlawful” move by Washington to tighten sanctions against Russia, Putin said it is time for Moscow to show that “we will not leave anything unanswered”. “We certainly have something to respond with and restrict those areas of joint cooperation that will be painful for the American side, but I don’t think we need to do it,” he said, adding that such steps could also harm Russian