After NATO expels suspected Russian spies, Lavrov says Russians have 'practically no conditions for diplomatic work.'
Russia’s foreign minister said Monday that the country is suspending its mission to NATO after eight members of Russia’s mission to the military alliance were accused of spying and sent home, AP reports.
Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that the move is in response to last week’s expulsion.
NATO said that they were secretly working as intelligence officers and halved the size of Moscow’s team able to work at its headquarters. Lavrov also announced that NATO’s military liaison and information offices in Moscow would be closed.
“As a result of NATO’s deliberate moves, we have practically no conditions for elementary diplomatic work and in response to NATO’s actions we suspend the work of our permanent mission to NATO, including the work of the chief military envoy, probably from Nov. 1. Or it may take several more days,” Lavrov said.
The Foreign Ministry said in a separate statement that NATO’s actions “confirm that they are not interested in an equal dialogue and joint work to deescalate military-political tensions. The alliance’s line towards our country is becoming more and more aggressive. The ‘Russian threat’ is inflated in order to strengthen the internal unity of the alliance, to create the appearance of its ‘relevance’ in modern geopolitical conditions.”
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