US expels Russian diplomats, Russian diplomats Twitter troll US

Several Russian embassies use Twitter to sass countries that expelled its diplomats following the poisoning of a former spy in Britain.

Daniel Van Boom Senior Writer
Daniel Van Boom is an award-winning Senior Writer based in Sydney, Australia. Daniel Van Boom covers cryptocurrency, NFTs, culture and global issues. When not writing, Daniel Van Boom practices Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, reads as much as he can, and speaks about himself in the third person.
Expertise Cryptocurrency, Culture, International News
Daniel Van Boom
2 min read

Over the past 18 months Russia has become known for professional trolling -- using fake online identities to politically rile up citizens in the US, UK and more.

So it's not so surprising to see Russian officials respond to the US' Monday expulsion of 60 diplomats with some Twitter trolling. 

Referencing the US' closure of the Russian consulate in Seattle, a tweet from the account of Russia's US embassy polls readers on which US consulate the Russian government should shut down. Consulates in Vladivostok, Yekaterinburg and St. Petersburg were listed. 

The expulsion of 60 Russian diplomats was part of the US' response to Russia's alleged use of nerve agent to poison Sergei Skripal on March 4. Skripal, a former double agent, was a Russian spy who also worked for Britain's MI6 in the '90s. Over 20 diplomats were booted from Britain, and countries including Australia, Canada, Ukrain, Germany, Poland and France took similar action.

The Twitter account for Russia's UK embassy joined its US counterpart in taking an ostensibly lighthearted swipe.

Many official Russian accounts were also used to retweet a more serious tweet from the country's Ministry of Foreign Affairs. It links to a 2004 Guardian story on nerve gas tests in Britain, implying hypocrisy on the part of the UK. 

Russia's official embassy accounts are no strangers to diplomatic trolling, and even the use of memes. This was posted in February 2017, for instance, as claims of various Russian hackings mounted.

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