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After 3 years, now? A left-handed slap at Syria’s buddy protector Putin?

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration ordered the Syrian government on Tuesday to suspend its diplomatic and consular missions in the United States, requiring all personnel who are not legal U.S residents to leave the country.

The order, three years after the start of Syria’s bloody civil war, essentially shutters the Syrian embassy in Washington and its honorary consulates in Troy, Mich., and Houston, Texas. It comes in response to a decision by President Bashar Assad’s government to suspend consular services for Syrians living in the U.S.

“We have determined it is unacceptable for individuals appointed by that regime to conduct diplomatic or consular operations in the United States,” U.S. special envoy to Syria Daniel Rubenstein said in a statement.

However, Rubenstein said the U.S. wants to continue diplomatic relations with Damascus, “as an expression of our longstanding ties with the Syrian people, an interest that will endure long after Bashar Assad leaves power.”

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HT: Wounded Dove

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