EU nations expels dozens of Russian diplomats over Ukraine war

EU nations expels dozens of Russian diplomats over Ukraine war

EU countries have expelled more than 40 Russian diplomats suspected of spying.

The countries Belgium, Ireland, the Netherlands, and the Czech Republic on Tuesday issued expulsion orders to 43 embassy staffers.

Last week, some other EU members, including Poland, had also expelled Russian diplomats from their countries.

While speaking to parliament, Belgian Foreign Minister Sophie Wilmès said that the expulsions were related to national security.

She specifically said 21 members of staff at the Russian embassy in Brussels and at the consulate in Antwerp had been asked to leave the country, giving them two weeks to depart.

Confirming that the move was coordinated, the foreign minister said that the expulsion was made in collaboration with the Netherlands, whose foreign ministry said it was expelling 17 Russian diplomats it considered to be active secret intelligence officers.

Also, Micheál Martin, Ireland’s Taoiseach (Prime Minister), had told members of parliament that four Russian diplomats have been expelled by his government after receiving security advice from its intelligence officials.

He said the activities of the diplomats are not in accordance with the international standards of diplomatic behaviour.

However, Russia’s embassy in Dublin has rejected the decision which it has referred to as groundless adding that it would deteriorate further Russian-Irish relations.

The Czech foreign ministry tweeted, “Together with our Allies, we are reducing the Russian intelligence presence in the EU,”

Mariusz Kaminski, Polish Interior Minister tweeted that Polish intelligence officials were dismantling the Russian special services network in the country.

Poland on Wednesday expelled 45 accredited diplomats for involvement in suspected espionage in the country.

Bulgaria, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia had also expelled a total of 20 Russian embassy staffers earlier this month in connection with activities that are not in alignment with their diplomatic status.

In retaliation, Russia earlier today expelled 10 diplomats from Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia.

Author: Greg