U.S. embassy to Russia reduces consular services
MOSCOW. April 30 (Interfax) - From May 12, the U.S. Embassy in Moscow will reduce consular services in connection with the decision of the Russian authorities to prohibit the embassy from employing foreign nationals, the embassy said in a statement on Friday.
"Effective May 12, U.S. Embassy Moscow will reduce consular services offered to include only emergency U.S. citizen services and a very limited number of age-out and life or death emergency immigrant visas," the statement, published on the embassy website, said.
"These service reductions are necessary due to the Russian government's April 23 notification of its intention to prohibit U.S. Mission Russia from employing foreign nationals in any capacity," the embassy said.
Therefore, the consular work force of the U.S. embassy in Moscow will be reduced by 75%, it said.
"Non-immigrant visa processing for non-diplomatic travel will cease," the embassy said.
"Embassy Moscow will not offer routine notarial services, Consular Reports of Birth Abroad, or renewal passport services for the foreseeable future," it said, adding that applications from U.S. citizens for the issuance of a new passport will be processed individually if the emergency need is confirmed.
"Provision of emergency services to U.S. citizens in Russia may also be delayed or limited due to staff's constrained ability to travel outside of Moscow," the embassy said.
"If you are a U.S. citizen present in Russia and your visa has expired, we strongly urge you to depart Russia before the June 15 deadline set by the Russian government" or to contact the Interior Ministry for its extension, the embassy said.