Diplomatic Briefing

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Archive for October 13, 2022

Newsline: Azerbaijan summons US envoy after shots fired at embassy vehicle in Washington

A vehicle of the Azerbaijani Embassy came under fire in Washington, the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said. The attack took place between the night of Oct. 10 and early hours of Oct. 11, according to the ministry. The ministry said it summoned the US charge d’affaires in Azerbaijan and expressed “serious concern and dissatisfaction over the incident.” After the attack, the embassy immediately contacted relevant US authorities and provided them surveillance footage, the statement said. Azerbaijan “strongly condemns the criminal acts based on hatred of radical forces in foreign countries directed against Azerbaijani diplomatic missions, diplomats and their property, and demands that the institutions responsible for preventing such provocations in their respective countries approach their duties with full responsibility,” it said. (https://worldbulletin.dunyabulteni.net/world/azerbaijan-says-shots-fired-at-embassy-vehicle-in-washington-h214891.html) Systematic attacks on Azerbaijani diplomatic missions by “radical members” of Armenian communities, including “acts of vandalism” in Washington, Paris, Beirut and other cities, is of serious concern, the ministry said.

Newsline: Israeli embassy claims Canada not doing enough for security

The Embassy of Israel in Canada says that the host government is not providing a proper level of security, leaving the Ottawa diplomatic mission vulnerable to threats. Canadian public broadcaster CBC interviewed two senior officials with the embassy who said that the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) downgraded security shortly after Israel’s former ambassador to Canada, Nimrod Barkan, retired in November 2019. That level of protection involved 24-hour security for the ambassador for movements between the embassy and official residence. (https://www.i24news.tv/en/news/international/americas/1665640651-israeli-embassy-says-canada-not-doing-enough-for-security) During the Covid-19 pandemic the ambassadorial position was left vacant, with a chargé d’affaires temporarily representing the Jewish state in Canada’s capital city. Embassy officials told CBC that after the current ambassador, Ronen Hoffman, started his term in December 2021, the embassy asked the RCMP to provide the same level of security his predecessor received. However, this request was rejected by Global Affairs Canada, the government department that manages the country’s diplomatic and consular relations, as well as by the RCMP.

Newsline: Russian envoy to U.S. visited convicted arms dealer

Russia’s ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov said early on Thursday he had visited Viktor Bout, the Russian arms dealer jailed in the United States and linked to a possible swap for two U.S. citizens imprisoned by Moscow. “He really wants to return to his homeland, he yearns for his family, for his mother,” Antonov said in a short video posted by the Russian embassy on the Telegram messaging app. (https://www.reuters.com/world/russian-envoy-us-says-he-visited-convicted-arms-dealer-bout-prison-2022-10-13/) Variously dubbed “the merchant of death” and “the sanctions buster” for his ability to get around arms embargoes, Bout, 55, is serving a 25 year-prison sentence. Washington has offered to exchange Bout for Brittney Griner, the U.S. basketball star jailed for nine years in Russia on drugs charges and U.S. Marine Corps veteran Paul Whelan. On Wednesday, the U.S. State Department said the United States had consular access to Griner since early August.