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Russia has expelled three European diplomats for taking part in unauthorized demonstrations in Moscow, the capital, and St. Petersburg.
The three expelled diplomats were representatives of Germany, Poland, and Sweden who had taken part in unauthorized protests on January 23 in two cities of the country, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a Friday statement.
The Russian Foreign Ministry summoned the Swedish ambassador, the Polish chargé d'affaires, and the German envoy to present them with the decisions in connection with their subordinates' participation in the illegal actions.
"In accordance with the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of April 18, 1961, diplomats who participate in illegal actions are declared persona non grata," indicated the body, stressing that these officials should leave the territory of the Russian Federation immediately.
Also, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov called these actions "unacceptable" and "inappropriate" for their diplomatic status and noted that he expects these EU states' representatives to strictly respect international law norms.
The fact that #Navalny insulted a 95-yr old war veteran is disgusting. This is an extreme sacrilege for Russian public. But his cheeky behavior at the trial is even more loathsome. We face an ugly clown and slanderer pretending to be a politician and openly proped up by the West
Last January 23, 2021, unauthorized demonstrations took place in different cities of the country, in support of the imprisoned right-wing activist Alexei Navalny, for massive fraud in the sphere of business activity and legalization of money obtained by illegal means.
A number of people also took to the streets on February 2, after the Moscow City Court released its ruling to enforce the suspended 3.5-year prison sentence against Navalny.
On the other hand, following the Moscow court's announcement, several Western nations called for Navalny's release, including the US, France, the UK, and Germany. However, Moscow advised them to pay attention to the situation in their own territories.