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Russian Foreign Ministry Preparing Lawsuit Against U.S. for 'Violating Property Rights'

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov Russian Foreign Ministry / Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Russia’s Foreign Ministry is consulting with “experts” about the possibility of bringing a lawsuit against the United States for confiscating consular properties in San Francisco, Washington D.C. and New York.

“We’ve reached out to several of people who understand how these things are organized,” Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov was cited as saying by the state-run TASS news agency.

Asked which court Moscow was planning to file the claim with, Lavrov referred to earlier comments made by President Vladimir Putin who said it would be at “the most just court in the world.”

“Theoretically, [this court] accepts claims from everyone,” Lavrov was cited as saying. The foreign minister would not give a timeframe, saying he was “not an expert on such matters.”

The White House has said President Donald Trump personally ordered the closure of the San Francisco consulate and annexes in Washington D.C. and New York. 

Russia’s Foreign Ministry claims FBI officials searched the premises ahead of the Sept. 2 deadline. Russia was also being asked to sell the properties to the U.S., according to ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova.

Speaking at the BRICS summit China on Tuesday Putin called the U.S. move “unprecedented,” adding he would instruct the Foreign Ministry to take the matter to court for the “violation of Russia’s property rights.” 

“Let’s see how effective the widely praised American judicial system is,” he said.

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