For the first time, Austrian authorities have decided to declare a Russian diplomat a persona non grata and expel him from the country by 1 September.

This was announced on Monday, 24 August, by the Austrian newspaper Kronen Zeitung.

It is noted that this diplomat, whose name has not yet been disclosed, interacted with an Austrian citizen who worked in the economic sphere and spied for the benefit of the Russian Federation.

“During the investigation, the Austrian citizen named the Russian diplomat as his curator,” the statement said.

The Russian refused to testify, taking advantage of diplomatic immunity.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Austria confirmed to the Russian agency TASS that official Vienna is indeed sending a Russian diplomat.

“I can confirm that a Russian diplomat will be expelled. His behaviour contradicts the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations,” said Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Claudia Turcher.

It should be recalled that Slovakia recently decided to expel three Russian diplomats, who were also suspected of espionage under the guise of diplomatic immunity.

Bohdan Marusyak

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