US shutters Syrian embassy, missions

A view of the Syrian Embassy on May 29, 2012 in Washington, DCThe United States on Tuesday closed down Syria’s embassy to Washington and ordered its remaining diplomatic staff to leave the country if they were not US citizens. Washington also notified Damascus that it would no longer be able to operate its two consulates in Troy, Michigan, and Houston, Texas, after the embassy announced last week it would no longer provide any consular services. US Secretary of State John Kerry said the decision was taken because “the illegitimacy of the Assad regime is so overwhelming.” The Syrian embassy in the US capital had been operating for some time without an ambassador, who left the US in December 2011, leaving only a few low level staff who had been providing limited consular services.

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