A senior Kremlin official says Moscow is losing its patience with Washington over the seizure of two Russian diplomatic compounds by U.S. authorities last year.
Yury Ushakov told reporters in Moscow on July 3 that Russia has shown "exceptional flexibility" following former U.S. President Barack Obama's decision to close the compounds in New York and Maryland as part of a response to Moscow's alleged meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
But Ushakov, a senior aide to President Vladimir Putin, said Russia's patience "has its limits," comments that come ahead of a planned meeting between Putin and U.S. President Donald Trump at the Group of 20 summit that begins in Germany on July 7.
"It seems to me that it's necessary to free the Russian side from the need to take retaliatory measures in response to the actions by the previous administration late last year, including the seizure of our diplomatic property," Ushakov said.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on June 28 that "retaliatory measures" were being prepared over the closure of the compounds.
The seizure of the compounds in December came in response to what top U.S. intelligence officials call a Kremlin-directed hacking and propaganda campaign aimed at helping elect Trump, who has said he wants to improve ties with Moscow. Russia rejects the accusation.
Ushakov said the details of the planned Trump-Putin meeting in Hamburg were still being finalized.
Based on reporting by AP, Reuters, and RIA Novosti