Russia expels 45 Polish diplomats
Moscow expels 45 diplomats in retaliation to Poland's expulsion of Russian diplomats last month.
Russia's Foreign Ministry announced on Friday that Moscow will expel 45 Polish diplomats.
The expulsion comes in retaliation to an earlier move by Poland, when it expelled 45 Russian diplomats in late March, citing claims of "espionage."
Polish Minister of Interior Mariusz Kamiński made the announcement on Twitter, saying "Poland has expelled 45 Russian spies pretending to be diplomats. We are dismantling the Russian special services network in our country."
Polska wydala 45 rosyjskich szpiegów udających dyplomatów. Z pełną konsekwencją i determinacją rozbijamy agenturę rosyjskich służb specjalnych w naszym kraju.— Mariusz Kamiński (@Kaminski_M_) March 23, 2022
At the time, Russia's Foreign Ministry summoned Poland's ambassador, and strongly protested the move. "The ambassador was told that we regard this step as confirmation of Warsaw's conscious desire to completely destroy bilateral relations," the ministry said, adding that "the blame for that lies wholly with the Polish side."
Today the ministry declared as persona non grata 45 employees of the Polish embassy in Russia and the Polish consulates in the cities of Irkutsk, Kaliningrad, and Saint Petersburg "as a response to Poland's unfriendly actions".
The Polish diplomats are to leave Russia by April 13.