Sometimes something might go wrong In diplomacy, as in other areas of political activity. The consequences of this can be the most serious: from the expulsion of diplomatic missions to their homeland and the "cooling" in relations between countries and ending with serious conflicts on the political plane.
Expulsion of the Ukrainian consul from the Russian Federation
The Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation (FSB RF) on the morning of April 17 announced the arrest of Ukrainian consul Oleksandr Sosonyuk. This happened on April 16 in St. Petersburg during a meeting of the diplomat with a citizen of the Russian Federation (who exactly is not specified).
The department stated that Sosonyuk allegedly tried to obtain information of a classified nature, which is contained in the databases of law enforcement agencies and the FSB.
Almost simultaneously with the message from the FSB, a statement appeared on the website of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) that Sosonyuk has 72 hours (starting from April 19) to leave the territory of the Russian Federation. That is, he is sent to his homeland.
In response, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry announced the expulsion of a senior diplomat from the Russian Embassy in Kyiv. We are talking about one of the advisers of the Russian Embassy in Kyiv by the name of Chernikov. He must leave the territory of Ukraine by April 21.
At this moment, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine is working on returning Sosonyuk home. On that day, April 16, he was detained for only a few hours, after which the consul returned to the territory of the diplomatic mission. Diplomatic immunity does not allow him to be arrested.
Deputy Foreign Minister Yevgeny Yenin noted: “According to the information we have, the person concerned (apparently, this is an unnamed citizen of the Russian Federation, - ed.) Called our consul and asked for a personal meeting for coffee. "Some incomprehensible discs. After that, our consul only managed to say: stop this provocation. And he was immediately detained.”
Yenin called Russia's arguments about the expulsion of the Ukrainian consul unconvincing. Prior to that, he noted that "our diplomat had nothing to do with the actions that Russian law enforcement officers incriminate him."
Against the background of this news, Servant of the People called on President Zelensky to sever diplomatic relations with the Russian Federation. For more details, follow the link.
Conflict between the Czech Republic and Russia. Return of Petrov and Boshirov
Czech Foreign Minister Jan Hamacek announced on April 17 that the country is expelling 18 Russian diplomats who "have been identified as officers of the Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR RF) and the Main Intelligence Directorate (GUR RF)."
In addition, Prime Minister Andrei Babis stated that there was an evidentiary suspicion that GRU officers were involved in the explosion of an ammunition depot in the village of Vrbetice in 2014, as a result of which, as is known, two Czech citizens were killed.
1/3 České bezpečnostní složky dosáhly fenomenálního úspěchu. Vyhoštění 18 důstojníků SVR a GRU a rozbití dvou rezidentur ruských tajných služeb citelně oslabí nepřátelské aktivity ruských agentů nejen vůči ČR. Jsem hrdý na práci všech policistů a zpravodajců.— Jan Hamáček (@jhamacek) April 18, 2021
The Czech police said they had put Russian citizens Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov on the wanted list.
Reference. According to British authorities, the two are GRU officers involved in the poisoning of ex-GRU officer Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia with Novichok nerve gas in March 2018.
Czech law enforcement officers note that Petrov and Boshirov arrived in Prague in October 2014, and then in the Mavrovsko-Silesian and Zlín regions. They entered the country with Russian passports in the names of Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, and left with a Moldovan passport in the name of Nikolai Pop and a Tajik passport in the name of Ruslan Tabarov.
Official Prague stated that information about the involvement of the power steering in the explosions in Vrbetica may affect the admission of the Russian Federation to the construction of a new power unit at the Dukovany nuclear power plant. On the evening of April 19, Reuters reported that the Czech government would still not offer Rosatom to take part in the security assessment, which in fact means the exclusion of the Russian Federation from the tender.
In the Russian Federation, the decision of the Czech authorities to expel diplomats was called tricks.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that "Prague is well aware of what will follow," apparently hinting at mirror measures. Soon, the Russian Foreign Ministry announced that 20 Czech diplomats should leave the territory of the Russian Federation by the end of the day on April 19.
In the Czech Republic, they are shocked by the scale of the expulsion of their diplomats and are deciding what to do next. Prague asked the UK and other allies to send Russian diplomats in solidarity with it.
Italy and Turkey. "Erdogan the dictator"
A diplomatic squabble between these countries erupted after Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi called Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan a dictator.
This is how the head of the Italian government reacted to the "armchair scandal" when the head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, was left without an armchair during a meeting with Erdogan in Ankara.
There were only two chairs in the room, which were occupied by the Turkish leader and President of the European Council Charles Michel, because of which the head of the European Commission had to stand aside for some time.
"I absolutely disagree with Erdogan's attitude towards von der Leyen... I think this is inappropriate behavior. I am very sorry for the humiliation that von der Leyen had to endure... With these - let's call them the right word - dictators with whom you have to coordinate your actions, you need to be frank, expressing great vision and opinion," Mario Draghi told reporters on April 8, The Guardian reports.
Shortly thereafter, the Italian ambassador to Ankara was summoned to the Foreign Ministry. The head of the ministry, Mevlut Cavusoglu, wrote on his Twitter that Turkey strongly condemns Draghi's "unacceptable and populist" statements regarding Erdogan.
Atanmış İtalya Başbakanı Draghi’nin kabul edilemez popülist söylemini ve seçimle göreve gelmiş Cumhurbaşkanımız hakkındaki çirkin ve hadsiz ifadelerini kuvvetle kınıyor, kendisine iade ediyoruz.— Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu (@MevlutCavusoglu) April 8, 2021
Prior to this, official Ankara noted that the seating arrangement at the meeting of von der Leyen, Michel and Erdogan was organized in accordance with the requirements of the EU and diplomatic protocol.
Erdogan himself said on April 14 that Draghi's statements allegedly undermined relations between the countries. The Turkish president called the words of the Italian prime minister a manifestation of "tactlessness and bad manners."
Italy and Russia. Spy scandal
On March 31, the Italian authorities announced their decision to expel two Russian diplomats from the country amid an espionage scandal.
"We conveyed to the Russian ambassador in Italy a firm protest from the Italian government and notified the immediate expulsion of two Russian officials involved in this very serious case. I thank our intelligence and the entire state apparatus, which works daily for the security of our country," Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio wrote in his Twitter.
Abbiamo trasmesso all’ambasciatore russo in Italia la ferma protesta del governo italiano e notificato l’immediata espulsione dei due funzionari russi coinvolti in questa gravissima vicenda. pic.twitter.com/B8Q2OpZfBt— Luigi Di Maio (@luigidimaio) March 31, 2021
The day before, in Rome, during the transfer of secret documents, the captain of the frigate of the Italian Navy and an officer of the Russian Armed Forces, who was accredited at the Russian Embassy in Rome, was detained. The men were accused of espionage.
As a result, the Italian officer was arrested, and the Russian diplomat, together with his immediate superior, was decided to be expelled from the country. Their diplomatic status does not allow them to be arrested.
The Russian Foreign Ministry expressed regret in this regard and stated that they were thinking about reciprocal steps.