06:10 GMT +324 September 2017
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    The Russian Consulate building, where smoke was seen coming from its roof, is seen in San Francisco, California September 1, 2017

    US Controls Non-Residential Part of Russian Consulate General in San Francisco

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    US Closes Russian Consulate General in San Francisco, Entities in NYC and Washington (38)
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    Russian Consul General Petrov reports that non-residential areas of the Russian Consulate in San Francisco are currently under the US authorities' control.

    SAN FRANCISCO (Sputnik) — The working premises of the Russian Consulate General in the US city of San Francisco are controlled by the US authorities and cordoned off by the police, Consul General Sergey Petrov told Sputnik Sunday.

    "The working premises of the Consulate General are presently under US authorities’ control, the police cordoned them off," Petrov said.

    Petrov stressed that the Consulate’s staff continued to live in its residential area.

    Earlier in the day, Petrov informed that the Russian Consulate General in the US city of San Francisco had stopped functioning, but the diplomats in residence, could stay there until October 1. State Department officials said they would have "sufficient time" to pack their things and move out.

    On Thursday, the US State Department said in a press release that Washington demanded that Moscow close down its Consulate General in San Francisco and two other diplomatic entities in New York City and Washington, DC by Saturday.

    Washington’s move came after Moscow announced in July that the diplomatic presence of the United States in Russia would be scaled down by 755 people to 455, the same number of diplomatic personnel Russia has in the United States since late 2016, when 35 Russian diplomats were expelled from the United States.

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    US Closes Russian Consulate General in San Francisco, Entities in NYC and Washington (38)

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