After Obama ordered the expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats and the closure of two compounds in response to alleged cyber attacks by Russia to interfere with the US presidential elections, Putin says he will wait for Trump to decide on further steps.
President Vladimir Putin said Moscow would not expel anyone in response to Washington's decision to throw out 35 Russian diplomats and and the closure of two Russian compounds in retaliation for alleged hacking by Russia during the US presidential elections.
Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov earlier proposed expelling 35 US diplomats in response to outgoing US President Barack Obama's sanctions on Thursday.
But Putin said he would wait for the actions of President-elect Donald Trump, who will take office on January 20, before deciding on any further steps in relations with the United States.
"We will not expel anyone," Putin said in a statement on Friday. "While keeping the right for retaliatory measures, we will not descend to the level of 'kitchen', irresponsible diplomacy."
The Russian president even invited US diplomats and their families to a party in the Kremlin. Russia has denied any involvement in the cyber attacks and calls the US decision "ungrounded."
TRT World's Daria Bondharchuk reports.
President-elect Donald Trump on Thursday suggested both countries forget about the controversy.
"I think we ought to get on with our lives. I think that computers have complicated lives greatly. The whole age of computer has made it that nobody knows exactly what's going on.
"We have the speed we have a lot of things, but I'm not sure we have the kind of security that we need. But I have not spoken with the senators, and I certainly will be over a period of time."
Russia's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said her country is "tired of the lie about the 'Russian hackers'."
The Russian Embassy in the United Kingdom responded with a tweet calling the Obama presidency a "Lame Duck."
President Obama expels 35 diplomats in Cold War deja vu. As everybody, incl people, will be glad to see the last of this hapless Adm. pic.twitter.com/mleqA16H8D— Russian Embassy, UK (@RussianEmbassy) December 29, 2016