Europe

US spy-row diplomat Ryan Fogle 'leaves Russia'

Ryan Fogle (FSB handout photo from 14 May)
Image caption The FSB released photographs of Ryan Fogle, right, after his arrest

US diplomat Ryan Fogle, who was accused by Russia of being a spy, has left the country, Russian television reported.

NTV broadcast footage said to show Mr Fogle passing through security at Sheremetyevo Airport in Moscow.

Mr Fogle was ordered to leave Russia five days ago after being accused of trying to recruit a Russian intelligence officer as a spy.

The purported CIA agent was arrested while wearing a blond wig and was briefly detained.

Mr Fogle is said to have been a third secretary at the US embassy in Moscow.

He was declared "persona non grata" for what the Russian foreign ministry called "provocative actions in the spirit of the Cold War".

The US State Department confirmed that Mr Fogle worked at the embassy but would give no details about his job. The CIA has declined to comment.

Russian officials said Mr Fogle had been caught trying to recruit an FSB counter-terrorism agent in the Caucasus.

After his arrest he was widely shown on Russian TV wearing a blond wig.

The Kommersant newspaper said he had been investigating suspects in the Boston Marathon bombing attacks, who came from the Caucasus.

Following the decision to expel Mr Fogle, Russia then named the alleged US intelligence chief in Moscow in a move seen as breaching diplomatic protocol.

Russia said it had warned the CIA Moscow station chief in 2011 to stop the "provocative" recruitment of spies.

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