The last group of Russian diplomats, who were to leave the Czech Republic as part of the equalization of the staff of the embassies of the two countries in Moscow and Prague, left for Russia on Monday, May 31. The press secretary of the Russian embassy Nikolay Bryakin reported about it in the comment to TASS.
"The second group of employees of the Russian embassy, consisting of 60 people, including members of their families, left Prague. They came under the Czech side-initiated reduction of diplomatic missions. Colleagues flew to Moscow at 5.40 pm (Moscow time) by the Russia charter flight detachment. This completed the process of bringing into parity the number of embassies of the Russian Federation in Prague and the Czech Republic in Moscow," Bryakin said.
From June 1, the Russian embassy in Prague and the Czech embassy in Moscow will have seven diplomats, 25 seconded administrative and technical staff and 19 hired staff.
On Saturday, May 29, 54 employees of the Russian diplomatic mission and members of their families left Prague.
As a reminder, the Minister of Foreign Affairs Jan Hamacek decided to expel from the Czech Republic 18 Russian diplomats who are suspected of work for special services of the Russian Federation. The Russian GRU officers were charged with involvement in an ammunition explosion in the village of Vrbetice in 2014. The explosion led to numerous destructions and the deaths of two locals. Only 6.5 years later, the Czech government officially accused Russia of organizing this sabotage.
In response, the Russian Foreign Ministry decided to expel 20 Czech diplomats from Moscow. The ministry also demanded that the number of locally hired staffers at the Czech Embassy be reduced to the same level as that of the Russian Embassy in Prague.