On Friday, US Department of State spokesperson John Kirby said that US authorities have expelled two Russian officials from the United States after an alleged attack by a law enforcement officer on a US diplomat in Moscow.
"I can confirm that, with reference to the above-described case, the US government really has demanded the departure of two staff members of the Russian Embassy in Washington, DC, without presenting any complaints to them. And the US State Department at a high level proposed us not to make this fact public. As you can see, American diplomats don't stand by their own words," Ryabkov said.
According to Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov, American diplomats were deported after the "unfriendly move" from Russia and declared persons non-grata due to their activity incompatible with diplomatic status.
On June 6, media reports claimed that a Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) guard stationed outside the US embassy in Moscow got into a physical altercation with an American diplomat who was allegedly attempting to enter the compound.
Zakharova further noted that the US diplomat was a CIA agent who was returning from an intelligence operation that night.
Ryabkov said Saturday that the US diplomat involved in the incident, as well as a "CIA operative" were those US diplomats deported from Russia.
Ryabkov said Moscow will respond to further escalation by the US in bilateral relations. Moscow hopes that Washington realizes the damage of its aggressive policy toward Russia, the ministry added.
"We hope that Washington understands that the aggressive anti-Russian stance is vicious. If it decides to move further along the path of escalation, we won't leave it unanswered," Ryabkov said.