The Russian embassy in Washington asked its Twitter followers to vote for which US consulate they’d like to see shuttered Monday, after the Trump administration announced it would close down the Russian consulate in Seattle and expel 60 alleged spies throughout the country.
In the poll, they offer the three US consulate locations in Russia as options: St. Petersburg, Vladivostok and Yekaterinburg.
The US decided to shut down the Seattle consulate because of its proximity to a submarine base, senior administration officials said Monday, and expel the diplomats for “aggressive” intelligence collection. The move is part of an international effort to punish Russia’s government for the alleged poisoning of a former Russian spy and his daughter in Great Britain.
The Russian embassy has a history of using humor, sharp rhetoric and the occasional snarky retort on their social media accounts.
Earlier this month, the embassy posted a picture of a helicopter over their building in Northwest DC, writing, “What was American helicopter searching for at the Russian Embassy’s premises yesterday night? ‘Strange’ malfunction of navigation equipment in the center of the US capital? Or another desperate attempt to find traces of #RussianMeddling?”
Late Sunday, the embassy used a post on its Facebook account to call for stability in the US-Russian relationship. The post was titled “Help London. Calm Downing Street,” a reference to the address 10 Downing Street, which houses Britain’s prime minister.
“Time after time we keep proving that every lunge against us will be parried tit-for-tat,” they warn in the post. “Every suggestion to ‘punish Russia’ is a suggestion to at least self-inflict a wound.”
State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert recently started responding to Russia’s trolling in kind. After the embassy tweeted well wishes to her on International Women’s Day, she responded, “Thank you, but on this #InternationalWomensDay the @StateDept & @USUN would prefer that #Russia live up to its international commitments & stop bombing innocent men, women & children in #Syria. #UNSCR2401”