January 14, 2014 4:20:36 pm
The US has distanced itself from the alleged offensive comments made by its diplomat, who was expelled by India in a tit-for-tat action following the arrest of a senior Indian diplomat in New York last month.
“Those comments absolutely do not reflect US Government policy, nor were they made on any official US Government social media account,” State Department Deputy Spokesperson Marie Harf told reporters at her daily news conference.
Citing privacy reasons, Harf refused to identify the diplomat who was asked to leave India last week. But Indian sources have identified the diplomat as Wayne May, who left along with his wife Alicia Muller May, also a diplomat.
She was responding to questions on the Facebook postings by May and his wife in which they made offensive comments about India and appear to be insensitive to Indian culture.
Harf said she has not seen the comments on Facebook.
“I’ve seen the reports of them…Again, I would underscore that these do not in any way represent the US Government position,” she added.
The couple were not available for reaction.
Indian diplomat Devyani Khobragade was arrested on December 12 on visa fraud charges, strip-searched and held with criminals, triggering a row between the two countries with India retaliating by downgrading privileges of certain category of US diplomats among other steps.
Khobragade was indicted on visa fraud and making false statements by a US grand jury. She returned to India after she was asked to leave the US by the State Department.
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