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    US Probes of Money Transfers for Russian Embassies Violate 'Elementary' Norms

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    Media reports about an FBI investigation into money transfers for Russian diplomatic missions abroad prove that the United States is violating "elementary" international norms, the Russian embassy in Washington has said.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — On Tuesday, the BuzzFeed news outlet said that the FBI was scrutinizing more than 60 money transfers sent by the Russian Foreign Ministry to its embassies worldwide through Citibank accounts, with most of them containing a memo line referencing the financing of "the election campaign of 2016."

    The publication comes amid the ongoing FBI and US Congress investigations into Russia's alleged involvement in the 2016 US presidential election campaign. The authors of the publication note that the transactions totaling $380,000 took place between August 3 and September 20, 2016. Seven states had federal elections during this period, including, you will never believe it, the Russian State Duma election. 

    "Now Buzzfeed together with the FBI and Congress are investigating money transfers for the embassy, which performs its duties in strict accordance with the Vienna Convention [on Diplomatic Relations]," the Russian embassy in Washington said in a statement.

    "In fact, they are investigating the embassy's activities in cooperation with Citibank. This is a new US norm… We are grateful to the BuzzFeed journalists, who have uncovered this blatant violation of elementary norms of treatment by local authorities of foreign diplomatic missions," the statement said.

    The embassy added that Russian diplomatic missions will continue providing Russian nationals living abroad with the possibility to vote in Russia's parliamentary or presidential elections or attract additional funding if it is necessary, and US investigators will not hinder this.

    "We have to disappoint 'the investigators.' We will continue holding Russian State Duma or presidential elections in accordance with our constitution, including for nationals living abroad, across the globe and in particular in the United States. If we need additional funding to organize the election, we will receive it from Moscow, through Citibank or any other bank. And it will be legal," the embassy said.    

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