The Russian Foreign Ministry reveals the reason for summoning the American ambassador… and sends a warning to “Washington”

Al-Marsad newspaper – Agencies: The Russian Foreign Ministry said it had summoned US Ambassador John Sullivan to tell him that US President Joe Biden’s statements in which he described his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin as a “war criminal” pushed relations between the two countries to the brink of collapse.

Biden said last week that Putin was a “war criminal” for sending tens of thousands of troops into Ukraine and targeting civilians.

“Such statements by the US president, which are not befitting a statesman of such high stature, put relations between Russia and America on the verge of collapse,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

The Kremlin earlier described the comments as “personal insults” to Putin.

The ministry told Sullivan that hostile actions against Russia would receive a “decisive and resolute response.”

State Department spokesman Ned Price confirmed that Sullivan met with Russian officials, but declined to say whether he had told them that the United States supported Biden’s accusation against Putin.

Price said in a press briefing that the United States believes it is necessary to maintain channels of communication with Russia, especially “in times of conflict.”

“We have sought to maintain a diplomatic presence in Moscow,” he added, and the United States wants Russia to maintain a similar presence in Washington.

Price added that Russia’s actions “raises doubts about whether it would also welcome the same open lines of communication.”

At the meeting, he said, Sullivan reiterated a request that US citizens detained in Russia be allowed to communicate with diplomats there, including those in pre-trial detention.

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He said that Russia is preventing US diplomats from meeting those who have been detained for months, in violation of international law.

Russia is holding at least three Americans, including American basketball star Britney Greiner, who was arrested this month at an airport in the Moscow region and accused of transporting drugs.