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Romania Detains Man Suspected of Spying for Russia

PJ Gal-Szabo / unsplash

Romanian prosecutors announced Friday that they had ordered the arrest of a man suspected of spying for Moscow, while the government declared a Russian diplomat persona non grata.

The arrest of a person suspected of spying marks the first of its kind in Romania since Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine more than two years ago.

Prosecutors said the arrested man, a Romanian citizen, had "since 2022, been monitoring Romanian or NATO military objectives located near the municipality of Tulcea," a town near the border with Ukraine.

He is suspected of "collecting military information and taking photographs of military combat equipment and the movement of personnel in the border area with Ukraine, which he transmitted to diplomats from the Russian embassy in Bucharest," prosecutors added.

Authorities did not disclose the man's age or identity.

Romania's Foreign Ministry later said a diplomat from the Russian embassy had been declared "persona non grata on the territory of Romania" for activities in breach of the Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations.

The ministry said it had summoned the Russian charge d'affaires to notify the latter of the decision.

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