Russia declared 10 employees of the U.S. Embassy in Moscow persona non grata. American diplomats should leave the territory of Russia until the end of the day, May 21, as the Foreign Ministry of Russia reported.
“On April 21, the Foreign Ministry of Russia summoned Deputy Head of the U.S. diplomatic mission in the Russian Federation Bartle B. Gorman who was handed the note of the declaration of 10 employees of the U.S. Embassy in Moscow persona non grata,” the message said.
The American diplomats should leave the territory of Russia until the end of the day, May 21.
The Russian Foreign Ministry stated that such measure is a tit-for-tat response to the hostile actions of the American side against a number of employees of the Russian Embassy in Washington and Consulate General of Russia in New York, who were declared persona non grata without any grounds.
Earlier, President of Russia Vladimir Putin threatened with asymmetrical and harsh measures as a response to the provocations against Russia. He stated that organizers of any provocations that threaten core interests of the security of Russia will regret “what they have done like they've never regretted anything for a long time”.
On the weekends, the Czech Republic expelled 18 Russian diplomats over links to an ammunition depot explosion in 2014. Czech intelligence agencies provided clear evidence about the involvement of the officials in the blast that killed two people, Babis said.
In its turn, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova called the decision of the Czech authorities to expel 18 diplomats from the country a "trick”. Later, the Russian Foreign Ministry decided to expel 20 Czech diplomats from Moscow.