Tuesday, July 16, 2024
 
 

Germany, Poland, Sweden expel Russian diplomats in tit-for-tat move

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Germany, Poland and Sweden on Monday announced a coordinated expulsion of Russian diplomats in their countries, in response to a similar move by Moscow last week.

Moscow justified the decision, arguing that the diplomats had attended illegal rallies in support of jailed opposition leader Alexei Navalny, however, the decision was labelled “groundless” or “not justified in any way” by the countries’ MFAs. 

“Today the Federal Foreign Office has declared a staff member of the Russian Embassy in Berlin persona non grata,” the German Federal Foreign Office said in a statement published on Monday. 

The statement supported that “the German diplomat in question had merely exercised his function pursuant to the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of observing developments in Russia by lawful means.” 

Similarly, Poland said it had asked a worker at consulate to leave the country, with its Foreign Affairs Ministry saying in a tweet it had decided “in accordance with the principle of reciprocity and in coordination with Germany and Sweden to consider the Russian diplomat working at the Russian Consulate General in Poznan as persona non grata”. 

Sweden on its part said it will ask a member of staff from the Russian Embassy to leave the country, labelling Moscow’s decision “unacceptable”.

“This is a clear response to the unacceptable decision to expel a Swedish diplomat who was only performing his duties,” Sweden’s Foreign Minister, Ann Linde tweeted.

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