Zakharova did not see the reasons and logic in the expulsion of a diplomat from Montenegro

The day before, Montenegro declared a Russian diplomat persona non grata. The authorities referred to Article 9 of the Vienna Convention: it states that diplomats can be expelled without explanation .webp 673w” type=”image/webp” media=”(max-width: 320px) and (-webkit-min-device-pixel-ratio: 2), (max-width: 320px) and (min-resolution: 192dpi)” >

Maria Zakharova

There are no reasons or logic in the decision of the Montenegrin authorities to expel a diplomatic employee of the Russian embassy, ​​said Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova.

“We consider the attack of the Montenegrin authorities as another episode of the hybrid campaign unleashed by the West and its satellites against Russia,” — the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Zakharova linked the decision to expel the diplomat to the unwillingness and inability of the Montenegrin authorities to “depart from the policy of mechanically following such a destructive line”; to the detriment of international security and cooperation, as well as our own national interests.

The Russian authorities reserve the right to retaliate, she added.

On the eve of the decision to declare a Russian diplomat persona non grata, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Montenegro announced. They cited Article 9 of the Vienna Convention as justification. The diplomat must leave the country within seven days, the corresponding note was handed to the Russian Ambassador to Montenegro Vladislav Maslennikov.

Article 9 of the Vienna Convention states that any country has the right, without giving reasons, to notify a foreign state that the head of its diplomatic mission or any other employee is persona non grata.

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The Russian embassy called Podgorica's decision unreasonable, warned that it would negatively affect bilateral relations, and promised a response.

In April, Montenegro expelled four Russian diplomats, Moscow responded mirror-wise. In the same month, the Montenegrin Foreign Ministry issued a statement about the severance of diplomatic relations with Russia, the post was later deleted, and the ministry apologized and explained that the message was published by mistake.

A new wave of expulsions of Russian diplomats by Western countries and the subsequent mirror measures of Moscow began in the spring, after the start of the Russian special operation in Ukraine. Since the beginning of 2022, a total of more than 550 diplomats have been expelled from Western countries, from Russia— 301.

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