Bulgaria expels 10 Russian diplomats over activities deemed incompatible

The country has condemned Russia’s attack on Ukraine



Ukrainian refugees cross the border as they seek refuge in countries like Poland, Hungary and Bulgaria. AP
Ukrainian refugees cross the border as they seek refuge in countries like Poland, Hungary and Bulgaria. AP

By Reuters

Published: Fri 18 Mar 2022, 3:47 PM

Bulgaria’s foreign ministry said on Friday it had declared 10 Russian diplomats “persona non grata” and given them 72 hours to leave the Balkan country over what it said were activities deemed incompatible with their diplomatic status.

In a statement on its website, the foreign ministry said the Prime Minister Kiril Petkov was consulted on the expulsions and the Russian ambassador to Sofia had been informed.

This is the second wave of expulsions of Russian diplomats from Bulgaria. On March 2, Sofia expelled two Russian diplomats over allegations they had been involved in espionage.

Bulgaria, Moscow’s closest ally during the Cold War but now a European Union and NATO member state that has condemned Russia’s attack on Ukraine, has expelled eight other Russian diplomats over suspected spying since October 2019.

On Monday, EU and NATO member Slovakia expelled three Russian embassy staff based on information from its secret service.


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