Diplomatic Briefing

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Archive for April 8, 2022

Newsline: Warsaw summons French envoy

Poland said today it had summoned the French ambassador after French president Emmanuel Macron called the Polish premier “a far-right anti-Semite who bans LGBT people”. “As a result of assertions by the French president in an interview with Le Parisien, foreign minister Zbigniew Rau decided to summon the French ambassador,” foreign ministry spokesman Lukasz Jasina said on Twitter. (https://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/world/2022/04/08/warsaw-summons-french-envoy-after-macron-comments/) Macron made the comments against Polish prime minister Mateusz Morawiecki in an interview published yesterday in the Le Parisien newspaper. Morawiecki had earlier criticised Macron for his repeated talks with Russian president Vladimir Putin.

Newsline: 40 Russian ‘non grata’ diplomats left Germany

Officials say 40 Russian diplomats declared ‘persona non grata’ by Germany earlier this week have left the country. The diplomats were picked up Friday by a Russian government plane that had received special permission to land at Berlin’s Schoenefeld Airport despite a ban on flights from Russia in the European Union. (https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Live-Updates-Russia-acknowledges-significant-17066127.php) Germany’s top security official had said earlier this week that the diplomats were chosen because they were linked to Russian intelligence agencies.

Newsline: EU ambassador returns to Ukraine’s capital Kyiv

The European Union has returned its ambassador to Ukraine to the capital, Kyiv, in a move that underscores the improved security situation there and the 27-nation bloc’s commitment to the beleaguered country. Borrell said the ambassador’s return would help ensure that the EU and Ukraine’s government can work together more directly and closely. (https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Live-Updates-Russia-acknowledges-significant-17066127.php) EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell made the announcement Friday during a visit to Kyiv where he joined EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen for talks with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

Newsline: Kuwaiti ambassador to return to Beirut before end of the week

The Lebanese prime minister’s office said in a statement that Kuwait informed the PM that its ambassador to Beirut will return to Lebanon before end of the week, in a sign of easing tensions following a rift that saw Gulf states withdraw their envoys last year. (https://www.fxempire.com/news/article/kuwaiti-ambassador-to-return-to-beirut-before-end-of-the-week-lebanese-prime-minister-statement-962569) Saudi Arabia and fellow wealthy Gulf states were once generous donors for Lebanon but relations have been strained for years by the growing influence of the Iran-backed Hezbollah movement.

Newsline: Russia declares 45 Polish diplomats ‘persona non grata’ in diplomatic expulsion tit for tat

The Russian Foreign Ministry said on Friday that 45 Polish diplomats had been declared “persona non grata” in a diplomatic expulsion tit for tat after Poland expelled 45 Russian diplomats. The foreign ministry said in a statement that it viewed Poland’s earlier move to expel Russia’s diplomats as “Warsaw’s conscious desire to completely destroy bilateral relations.” Moscow said that the diplomats must leave the country before the end of the day next Wednesday. (https://thehill.com/policy/international/3262591-russia-declares-45-polish-diplomats-persona-non-grata-in-diplomatic-expulsion-tit-for-tat/) The foreign ministry also announced a similar diplomatic tit for tat expulsion with Bulgaria, announcing it would be expelling two of the country’s diplomats in Russia after Bulgaria expelled two Russian diplomats at the Russian Embassy in Sofia. Poland and Bulgaria have become the latest countries within the European Union to be involved in diplomatic expulsions amid the ongoing Russian invasion in Ukraine. Lithuania, Denmark, Italy, Germany and Estonia have already expelled Russian diplomats from their countries or shut down diplomatic facilities this week.

Newsline: Japan to expel Russian diplomats

Japan’s Foreign Ministry says it will expel a number of Russian diplomats stationed in the country. Eight Russians, including diplomats, will be expelled, it announced Friday. (https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics/Ukraine-war/Ukraine-war-Free-to-read/Ukraine-latest-Japan-to-expel-some-Russian-diplomats) Japan has been cautious about expelling Russian diplomats up to now, but changed course as the U.S. and European countries have moved to punish Russia diplomatically. Tokyo’s decision is likely to prompt Moscow to make tit-for-tat expulsions of Japanese diplomats from Russia.

Newsline: Two Irish diplomats asked to leave embassy in Moscow

Two diplomats have been asked to leave the Irish Embassy in Moscow, it has been confirmed. Ireland’s Minister for Foreign Simon Coveney said there was “no justification” for the move. “The ambassador of Ireland to the Russian Federation was summoned to the foreign ministry in Moscow this afternoon and informed that two diplomats from our Embassy in Moscow have been asked to leave,” Mr Coveney said in a statement. (https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/world/two-irish-diplomats-asked-to-leave-embassy-in-moscow/ar-AAVYCep) The move comes two weeks after four senior Russian officials were asked to leave Ireland because their activities had not been “in accordance with international standards of diplomatic behaviour”, according to the Irish government.

Newsline: Montenegro expels four Russian diplomats

Montenegro’s Foreign Ministry ordered four Russian diplomats to leave the country over violations of diplomatic norms, the Podgorica-based Pobjeda newspaper reported, citing sources from the ministry. (https://www.reuters.com/world/montenegro-expels-four-russian-diplomats-report-2022-04-07/) A diplomatic note has been handed over to Russia’s ambassador to Montenegro and the diplomats have a week to leave the country, the report said. Officials from Montenegro’s Foreign Ministry and the Russian embassy could not immediately be reached for comment.