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EU diplomats expelled from Russia

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According to RT news, the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs expelled 18 employees of the European Union Delegation on Friday 15 April 2022 in response to ‘unfriendly actions’ of the European Union.

RT and Reuters reported that Markus Ederer, head of the European Union Delegation was summoned to the Ministry where officials expressed ‘strong objection’ to the ‘unjustified’ expulsion of 19 employees of the Russian Permanent Mission to the EU and Euratom (European Atomic Energy Community). No date has been set for the delegation to leave but the ministry has said ‘the EU diplomats must leave Russia as soon as possible’.

The expulsions are the latest in a tit for tat style diplomatic row that has seen many Western countries expel Russian diplomats in response to ongoing Russian military action in Ukraine.

The Ministry stated that Russia believes the EU was responsible for the consistent destruction of the architecture of bilateral dialogue and cooperation that has been created for decades.

In response, the EU lead spokesperson for external affairs Peter Stano turned to twitter to condemn Russia’s latest move saying: ‘EU deplores unjustified, baseless decision by Russia to expel 18 members of the EU in Russia, pure retaliation & will only deepen Russia’s isolation’. He further stated that the ‘EU strongly calls on the Kremlin to return to respecting international rules & cooperative approach to international relations’.

Some on social media have responded to Peter Stano’s comments overwhelmingly in favour of Russia’s latest move. Twitter users have said ‘does EU expect Russia to turn the other cheek for a slap?’ Another stated “it [seems] that ONLY US, EU and the [allies] can do what ever they wanna do. It’s the [new] trend, hate the Russians’. Others support these views saying ‘Unjustified and baseless? Really? So, after everything the EU has been doing to Russia for the past months does not look like the basis?’

Since the unverified accounts of civilian fatalities in the Ukrainian city of Bucha, roughly 300 Russian diplomats and staff have been expelled from European countries since the Russian military action in Ukraine commenced.

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