Speed Reads

Bust a move

Russia blames America's 'solo breakdance moves' for ruining relations

After the State Department on Thursday closed three of Russia's consular offices, citing the "spirit of parity," Moscow threatened that its retaliation would be "harsh." But Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov appeared to walk back that statement Friday, the Washington Examiner reports.

"We understand that efforts are being made to corner [the Trump administration] at every opportunity, so we don't believe it is necessary to take any active steps concerning relations with the U.S.," Lavrov told state-run media.

Despite cooling Moscow's threats, Lavrov "expressed doubts Trump would now be able to pursue détente," ABC News writes. "It takes two to tango," said Lavrov. "It seems to me, our U.S. counterparts for now are performing solo breakdance moves."

The State Department's decision to close the offices in San Francisco, New York, and Washington, D.C., followed the Kremlin's expulsion of 755 American diplomats in July. The escalation of the diplomatic war was criticized by Russian media as plunging relations between the two nations to a new low. An aide to Russian President Vladimir Putin, Yuri Ushakov, added that "somebody should display common sense and put an end to the grave condition of our bilateral relations."