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After expulsion of its diplomats from Moscow, Berlin pledges to respond

After the Russian Foreign Ministry announced, earlier in the day, the expulsion of 3 employees from the German, Swedish and Polish diplomatic missions due to the demonstrations, German Chancellor Angela Merkel condemned this decision, and in a press statement after virtual talks with the French President, Emmanuel Macron, she said: “We consider a decision. The expulsion of (the diplomats) was totally unfounded. “
For his part, Foreign Minister Heiko Maas pledged that Berlin would reciprocate if Moscow did not back down.
In a written statement, he said: “Russia’s decision to expel a number of diplomats from the European Union, including an employee of the German embassy in Moscow, is totally unfounded and is causing further damage to relations with Europe.”
Maas explained that the German diplomat, whom Russia intends to deport, “only worked in accordance with the Vienna Agreement on Diplomatic Relations and was undertaking a mission included in this document, which is to collect information about developments from the ground.”
German Foreign Minister stressed: “In the event that Russia does not review this step, it will not remain without a response.”


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