×
Enjoying ad-free content?
Since July 1, 2024, we have disabled all ads to improve your reading experience.
This commitment costs us $10,000 a month. Your support can help us fill the gap.
Support us
Our journalism is banned in Russia. We need your help to keep providing you with the truth.

Russia Blames Stockholm for Tit-for-Tat Diplomat Expulsions

Russia criticized Sweden for allegedly suggesting the diplomatic incident could hurt bilateral ties.

The Russian Foreign Ministry confirmed Tuesday the expulsion of a high-ranking Swedish diplomat in response to a similar move by Sweden, accusing Stockholm of organizing a “provocation” that could lead to a deterioration in relations between the two countries.

“Recently a member of the diplomatic staff at the Swedish Embassy in Moscow was declared persona non grata,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

The spat is the latest sign of tension between the two countries, which have seen fracturing ties in recent months amid Stockholm's criticism of Russia's role in Ukraine, and alarm among Russia's Baltic neighbors caused by the increased activity of Russian military vessels and planes in the region.

The unnamed Russian diplomat was expelled from Sweden after Russia violated the Vienna Convention, a code of behavior to which diplomats are expected to adhere, according to Swedish Foreign Office spokesman Johan Tegel, the Reuters news agency reported Monday.

Russia criticized Sweden for allegedly suggesting the diplomatic incident could hurt bilateral ties.

“It is bewildering that the Swedish side, having taken this unfriendly step, is now holding forth about the negative influence on Russian-Swedish relations. Responsibility for the consequences of this provocation rests entirely with Stockholm,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

Neither Russia or Sweden specified when the expulsions occurred.

Moscow has stepped up its military presence in the Baltic in the wake of deteriorating relations with European countries over the Ukraine crisis, with the North Atlantic Treaty Alliance (NATO) reporting the number of scrambles to intercept foreign jets at its highest level since the Cold War.

Less than a year ago, Sweden carried out its biggest military mobilization for more than 20 years as it gathered troops and ships to search for a submarine it suspected of lurking in its waters. Some media reported that military was searching for a Russian vessel.

Contact the author at h.amos@imedia.ru

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

Once
Monthly
Annual
Continue
paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more