It was a brutal and wanton murder, and the US qualifies it as a crime, an act of terrorism, and those responsible for it have to be called to account, said the spokesman. The US shared the Russian authorities' indignation and commitment to administering justice, he added.
Answering a question about who exactly was legally responsible for foreign citizens' security in Iraq, the US official said that Iraq was a sovereign state, and the responsibility for it lied with that country's government.
Protection of diplomats is of special importance, and responsibility for it lies with the Iraqis, but general security is a sphere where the US provides support to the Iraqis, noted Adam Erely.
As has been reported, on June 3 Iraqi gunmen associated with "Al-Qaeda" attacked a Russian embassy car in Baghdad. Embassy third secretary Fiodor Zaitsev and embassy employees Rinat Agliulin, Anatoly Smirnov and Oleg Fedoseyev were kidnapped, while yet another employee –security guard Vitaly Titov – was killed. June 26, after a video recording showing the execution of the four Russian embassy staff had been posted on extremist websites, the Russian Foreign Ministry confirmed the death of our diplomats.
Last Wednesday Russian President Vladimir Putin directed Russian special operations services to take all steps to search for and liquidate the criminals who murdered the Russian diplomats in Iraq. At a meeting with the Saudi Prince the Russian leader said that Russia would be grateful to all its friends for providing any information about the criminals who had taken hostage and then killed the four Russian citizens.