North Macedonia says it has expelled a Russian diplomat

August 17, 2021 GMT

SKOPJE, North Macedonia (AP) — North Macedonia has expelled a Russian diplomat — the second this year — authorities confirmed on Tuesday, without offering any explanation for the decision.

Foreign Minister Bujar Osmani said the Russian ambassador was summoned last week and informed of the decision concerning one of his senior diplomats.

Osmani didn’t reveal the diplomat’s rank and identity, or the reason for the expulsion, saying that “information of this nature is confidential.” He added that North Macedonia takes “all appropriate measures and activities” to protect its security and the security of its allies.

Russian Embassy spokeswoman Ekaterina Akopjan confirmed that a diplomat had been declared “persona non grata” and left the country 10 days ago. She said Russian authorities were reviewing reciprocal measures.

North Macedonia expelled another unnamed Russian diplomat in May. Another was expelled in March 2018 for domestic security reasons and in solidarity with Britain over the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal in the U.K.