More EU member states kick out Russian diplomats — RT World News

Italy, Denmark and Sweden will deport a total of 48 people, as Moscow vows retaliation

Italy, Denmark and Sweden have decided to expel a total of 48 Russian diplomats, becoming the latest EU countries to use the measure in an ongoing diplomatic crisis amid Moscow’s assault on Ukraine.

The foreign ministers of the three countries informed the Russian ambassadors of their decision on Tuesday.

Denmark will expel 15 Russian diplomats as part of the move. Foreign Minister Jeppe Kofod informed the Russian Ambassador that the individuals involved have two weeks to leave the country.

According to the Danish Foreign Ministry, these individuals are working at the Russian Embassy in Copenhagen and are using their diplomatic status as a cover to gather intelligence for Moscow.

“This will signal to Moscow that we will not accept Russian intelligence officers spying on Danish territory,” Kofod said.

“They constitute a threat to our national security, which we cannot ignore. Together with some of our closest allies, we have therefore brought down the espionage that people have been identified with under the guise of diplomacy.”

Despite the expulsion, the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that it wanted to maintain diplomatic relations with Moscow by using the embassy in Copenhagen as a primary communication channel, which is why the ambassador and Other employees are not kicked out of the house.

Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio also informed the ambassador that Italy would expel 30 Russian diplomats, citing “security concerns”.

Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde announced that Sweden has decided to expel 3 Russian diplomats “Those working in Sweden are not in compliance with the Vienna Convention,” she told reporters.

Meanwhile, Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Store said his government is also considering similar moves, but no decisions have been made yet.

The moves come just a day after Germany announced it would expel 40 Russian diplomats, while France said it would expel “about 30”.

At the moment, more than 200 Russian diplomats working in the US and Europe have now been returned home since Moscow began its military operation in Ukraine.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova stated that the mass expulsion of Russian diplomats would not be without answers and that Moscow would take similar steps in response.

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