The Czech Foreign Ministry expressed to Russian Ambassador Alexander Zmeevsky a protest against the expulsion of 20 embassy employees from Moscow. This is reported by TASS.
Foreign Minister Jakub Kulganek says,
All expelled employees of the Czech Embassy must be returned to their places in Moscow. We expect a decision until 12:00 Thursday. If it is not adopted, then we will proceed with the option of bringing the staff of both embassies into parity in terms of the number of employees.
According to Kulganek, the expulsion “practically paralyzed the work of the embassy” in Moscow.
The Russian Foreign Ministry, commenting on Kulganek’s statements, offered the Czech Republic “to leave ultimatums for communication within NATO.”
“Tomorrow the conversation with the Czech ambassador will be continued at the Russian Foreign Ministry,” said the representative of the ministry, Maria Zakharova.
On April 17, the Czech authorities accused the Russian special services of organizing explosions at military depots in Vrbetica in 2014. Because of this, 18 employees of the Russian Embassy were expelled from the country.
Russia responded by expelling 20 diplomats from Moscow. The accusations of Prague in the Russian Foreign Ministry were called absurd and unfounded.
Over a hundred employees worked at the Russian Embassy in the Czech Republic. This is much more than in the embassies of other large countries such as China and the United States. Czech counterintelligence claimed that at least a third of Russian diplomats were spies.