Kathimerini Greece Newsroom
Greece on Wednesday declared 12 Russian officials persona non grata, joining other European states that have taken similar steps in recent days as accusations of atrocities committed by Russian forces against civilians in Ukraine pushed diplomacy to its limits.
The Foreign Ministry said the decision was made in line with the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and the 1963 Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.
It added that the ministry’s general secretary has notified the Russian ambassador of the decision.
In reaction to the move by the Greek Foreign Minister, the Russian Embassy in Greece said that the country's decision to deport 12 diplomats will not be without consequences.
A statement reads: "On April 6, 2022, Russian Ambassador to Greece Andrei Maslov was summoned to the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs, where he was informed of Athens' decision to declare 12 diplomats of the Embassy and Consulate General in Thessaloniki persona non grata. For our part, we have strongly protested against this unjustified and controversial step aimed at destroying our bilateral relations. We pointed out that this action will not be left without consequences. Russia will give an appropriate response,” Russian news agency RIA quoted a foreign ministry spokesperson as saying.
During an address to the European Parliament on Wednesday, European Council president Charles Michel expressed his “outrage at crimes against humanity, against innocent civilians in Bucha and in many other cities.” The European Commission proposed sweeping new sanctions against Russia on Tuesday.