15:15 GMT20 April 2021
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    LONDON (Sputnik) - The UK authorities are trying to create a hostile image of Moscow in order to hamper the Russian diplomats' interaction with the UK public, the Russian Embassy in London said on Thursday.

    "Unfortunately, the spy hysteria in the British society is aggravating. The content of such publications, which regularly appear in the British media with the connivance of the authorities, shows that the current Conservative government is increasing its efforts to create a 'toxic' image of the Russian Embassy in order to complicate our interaction with the British public as much as possible. Embassy staff travelling across the country is an absolutely normal, lawful and indispensable part of their work and daily life. Yet it is displayed as some kind of intelligence missions," the embassy’s spokesperson said, when asked to comment on the latest media reports.

    On Wednesday, the Daily Mirror newspaper reported, citing a leaked memo of the UK military and intelligence officers, that Russia had been allegedly mobilizing its remaining diplomats in the United Kingdom for intelligence purposes. The memo, in particular, urges the UK authorities to record any Russian diplomatic cars spotted in Britain, according to the media outlet.

    Russian-UK relations have significantly deteriorated after the March poisoning incident in Salisbury with London accusing Moscow of being behind the attack on former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia. Russia has refuted the allegations and repeatedly pointed to the lack of evidence provided by London.

    READ MORE: UK's MI6 Chief to Urge Russia 'Not to Underestimate Our Determination'

    The situation led to an international row, with scores of Russian diplomats being expelled from the United Kingdom and other EU countries. Moscow in response has expelled some UK diplomats from Russia.


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