The campaign launched by New York City authorities to collect outstanding fines for parking violations by foreign diplomats "is not discriminatory in character with regard to Russia," as was often the case in the past, Vyacheslav Pavlovsky, the Russian consul general in New York, opined in remarks to RIA Novosti.
He pointed out the ultimate reason why outstanding parking fines tend to amass is the mismatch between the amount of parking space reserved for diplomats and the number of cars carrying diplomatic license plates in the city. Pavlovsky estimates that foreign diplomats run some 2,600 cars as against 480 parking bays specially designated for their transport.
The consul general noted Russia's commitment to a speedy settlement of the dispute, adding that Russian diplomats were not leading in parking violations.
"Our staff barely ever violate traffic rules and the insubstantial debt in question really goes back to the period of the 1990s," he pointed out.
New York City Hall estimates the total outstanding fines owed by foreign missions at over $20 million.