Russia on Friday ordered the United States to cut hundreds of diplomatic staff in retaliation for a new round of U.S. sanctions, and said it was seizing two U.S. diplomatic properties. Moscow's decision, which had echoes of the Cold War, was announced by the Foreign Ministry a day after the U.S. Senate overwhelmingly approved new sanctions on Russia. The bill now passes to President Donald Trump for final approval. Russia had been threatening retaliation for weeks. Its response suggests it has set aside initial hopes of better ties with Washington under Trump, something the U.S. leader, before he was elected, had said he wanted to achieve.
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Sheila Samples is an Oklahoma writer and a former civilian US Army Public Information Officer. She is a Managing Editor for OpEd News, and a regular contributor for a variety of Internet sites.