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U.S. Envoy to Lose Influence in Moscow, Lawmaker Says

Michael McFaul, the U.S. Ambassador to Russia, “won’t have any influence in Moscow,” a Russian lawmaker said.

“It’s the United States that has decide whether they need an ambassador who won’t have any influence in Moscow,” Aleksey Pushkov, a representative of the Russian parliament’s foreign affairs committee, said in a Twitter Inc. message.

McFaul apologized in an e-mailed statement today for comments during a speech to students in which he accused Russia of bribing Kyrgyzstan to close a U.S. air base used for Afghan operations.

Russia’s Foreign Ministry chastised McFaul, a former Stanford University professor in his first diplomatic posting, for breaching protocol and “unprofessional” behavior by spreading “blatant falsehoods through the media.”

McFaul’s comments had been “misunderstood,” Victoria Nuland, a State Department spokeswoman, said on May 29.

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