US to expel 12 Russian diplomats from UN mission

United Nations
Vasily Nebenzia

The United States has announced plans to expel 12 Russian diplomats from Moscow’s mission to the United Nations in New York.

In a statement on Monday, the US mission to the UN said it had started the process of expelling the diplomats for “engaging in espionage activities that are adverse to our national security”. It described the diplomats as “intelligence operatives”.

Denouncing the US move as “hostile”, Russia’s UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia told reporters the diplomats had been asked to leave by March 7.

According to the U.N. diplomatic directory, Russia has 79 diplomats accredited to the United Nations. The U.S. Mission did not name those who are being expelled or state how long they are being given to leave the country.

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