May 14, 2013 Reuters
MOSCOW - Russia expelled a U.S. diplomat on Tuesday after saying he had been caught red-handed with disguises, special equipment and wads of cash as he tried to recruit a Russian intelligence agent to work for the CIA.
Apparently detained in an incongruous-looking blond wig, with props reminiscent of a schoolboy's spy kit, U.S. Embassy Third Secretary Ryan Fogle hardly looked like a Cold War secret agent.
But the announcement still came at an awkward time for Washington and Moscow as they try to improve relations and bring the warring sides in Syria together for an international peace conference. Nevertheless, there was little sign that either country wanted to escalate the affair beyond a minimum response.
The Russian Foreign Ministry summoned U.S. Ambassador Michael McFaul to discuss the case on Wednesday and released a statement ordering Fogle to leave Russia.
"Such provocative actions in the spirit of the Cold War will by no means promote the strengthening of mutual trust," it said.