9 Oct 2019 19:38

Duma to ask U.S. Congress to explain Yumasheva incident - Slutsky

MOSCOW. Oct 9 (Interfax) - Senior members of the Russian Duma will enquire with their counterparts in U.S. Congress on the subject of the situation surrounding Deputy Inga Yumasheva, Leonid Slutsky, head of a State Duma committee, said.

"A letter to the U.S. Congress will be prepared very soon," Slutsky told journalists on Wednesday.

Most likely, it will be from the Duma leadership to the Congress leadership, he said.

The Duma supports the work of its group for relations with Congress, he said. "The Duma leadership will now write, as quickly as possible, a letter to the leaders of Congress so that this outrageous situation receives due evaluation from the leadership of both houses of U.S. Congress," Slutsky said.

The letter will be in the format of a document "comprehensible to the leadership of both houses of U.S. Congress," he said.

The Duma has repeatedly written "collegial documents" to the Congress regarding various situations, including the unilateral exit from the Intermediary-range Nuclear Forces Treaty and on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action on Iran, he recalled.

"In this particular instance, when the house's leadership turns to the leadership of both [Congress] houses, this implies, in a society of cultured people, some fairly quick and fairly substantive reply. I hope we'll get one very soon, and that it hopefully will be something containing, first of all, apologies for what happened, and secondly, some kind of a guarantee that such things won't happen in our future contacts with the U.S. in the area of parliamentary diplomacy," Slutsky said.

Yumasheva traveled to the United States for the Fort Ross Dialogue forum on Russian-U.S. relations in the capacity of coordinator of the State Duma's group for relations with the U.S. Congress. The FBI questioned her at a New York airport.

According to Russian Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov, an FBI officer questioned Yumasheva for about one hour following her detention. Antonov said that the officer offered Yumasheva to continue their communication "in an informal atmosphere."

The Russian Embassy to the United States protested Yumasheva's questioning in a statement to the U.S. Department of State.