The embassy said Moscow's requirement to cut its staff to 455 diplomats and technical personnel would also affect "the scheduling of a limited number of immigrant visa applications".
Beginning Wednesday there will be an eight-day suspension of non-immigrant visas from the embassy and its three consulates.
"Requests for academic programs in the USA were rather active, but not all clients could get them even before the imposed restrictions, as the visa-issuing procedures this year have been already excessively long", the director of the department for education overseas of BSI GROUP tour operator, Irina Naumova, commented. The Kremlin order came only days after President Trump signed a law on new sanctions against Russian Federation.
USA diplomats in Russia are continuing targets of Russian surveillance, targeting, "honey-trapping" and (occasional) vandalism and physical abuse.
The embassy has already begun cancelling appointments and asking applicants to reschedule.
"On Sept. 1, USA services will then be offered "on a greatly reduced scale", Reuters reported".
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This is a good example of Putin (again) cutting his nose to spite his face and a "win-win" for the U.S.
The visa cuts are the latest in a tit-for-tat diplomatic row that began a year ago.
President Donald Trump's predecessor, Barack Obama, declared 35 Russian diplomats persona non grata in December.
Russian Federation didn't immediately respond, waiting to see if Trump would be able to strike a more conciliatory tone.
Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the United States to cut its 755-person diplomatic staff in Russia in retaliation for sanctions legislation passed in July by the U.S. Congress. It insisted however that it will able to maintain adequate staffing "to carry out essential elements of our mission".
21 de agosto de 2017, 12:10Moscow, Aug 21 (Prensa Latina) The Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said today that his government will take the necessary measures after checking the United States decision to restrict the visa issuing process to Russian citizens.
"The American authors of these decisions have come up with another attempt to stir up discontent among Russian citizens about the actions of the Russian authorities".
He said the U.S. visa move had a "political overtone" and that Moscow would consider how best to respond.