Moscow Mulls Retaliation After North Macedonia Declares Russian Embassy Staffer Persona Non Grata
10:58 GMT 17.08.2021 (Updated: 11:25 GMT 17.08.2021)
© Sputnik / Anton DenisovThe building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation on Smolenskaya-Sennaya Square in Moscow.
© Sputnik / Anton Denisov/
The Russian Embassy in the Balkan country previously confirmed that a diplomat was declared persona non grata, adding that he had left North Macedonia 10 days prior to the decision, due to the end of his business trip.
Moscow plans to respond in kind after a Russian diplomat was expelled by Skopje, the Russian Embassy stated on Tuesday.
"We confirm that we have received a note of the persona non grata announcement of one of the embassy employees. This employee had left North Macedonia 10 days before due to the end of his business trip. At the moment, the Russian side is considering retaliatory measures", the embassy said.
© AP Photo / Boris GrdanoskiA street vendor fixes a North Macedonia flag next to an EU flag in a street in Skopje
A street vendor fixes a North Macedonia flag next to an EU flag in a street in Skopje
© AP Photo / Boris Grdanoski
At the same time, North Macedonian authorities have explained their decision, citing the diplomat's behaviour, which allegedly "contradicted the principles of the Vienna Convention".
"I cannot disclose any details, since this kind of information is usually classified, but the Foreign Ministry is about to receive confirmed and documented information about the behaviour of an accredited foreign diplomat running counter to the principles of the Vienna Convention, and it will take measures to protect its national security, as well as the security of our allies", North Macedonian Foreign Minister Bujar Osmani said at a briefing.
This is the first time Skopje has clashed with Moscow since May when North Macedonia expelled another Russian diplomatic staffer.