USAID will stop operations in Russia on Oct 1, asks for more time to wind down mission

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) will stop its activities in Russia on Oct. 1, but it needs more time to complete its programs, U.S. Department of State Spokesperson Victoria Nuland said.

"We have committed to the Russian government that there'll be no new contracting, no new programming, as of Oct. 1. But we have also asked for some time to wind down the mission, to conclude the programs that we have underway. As you can imagine, this doesn't just affect the American staff. There's a huge amount of Russian staff involved, so we have to unwind things there," Nuland said at a news conference in Washington.

"We're in a conversation with the Russian government about how much time we think it's going to take us to wind things down. I don't want to get into the details of that because it's an ongoing conversation," Nuland said.

She confirmed that U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had sent a letter to Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to express regret that the USAID programs in Russia were going to end.

It was reported on September 18 that Moscow had notified Washington that USAID\'s office in Russia would have to be closed down on October 1.

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