Russian plane lands in US to remove diplomats expelled for alleged espionage 


A Russian plane landed at Washington’s international airport Saturday to pick up about a dozen diplomats from Moscow’s UN mission who are accused by Washington of espionage, authorities said.

The United States closed its airspace to all Russian aircraft after Moscow invaded Ukraine.

The Ilyushin Il-96 aircraft was allowed, however, to land at Dulles International Airport. The landing was confirmed by the FlightAware website, which tracks all air movement.

“The US government approved a flight chartered by the Russian government to facilitate the departure of Russian UN Mission personnel who were expelled for abuse of their privileges of residence,” a State Department spokesman told AFP.

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