Russia expels two Bulgarian diplomats

Russia has declared two employees of the Bulgarian embassy persona non grata, a statement posted on the website of the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

Bulgarian Ambassador Atanas Krystin was invited to the Russian Foreign Ministry, where he was handed a note from the ministry. The note contained the announcement of the first secretary of the consular service of the Bulgarian Embassy in Russia, Nikolai Panayotov, and the first secretary of the service for trade and economic issues, Chavdar Khristozov, persona non grata.

The two officials will be expelled from Russia within 72 hours.

“This measure comes as a response to the unmotivated decision of the Bulgarian side, which was made in March of this year to declare two employees of the Russian Embassy in Sofia persona non grata,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement. 

Bulgaria declared two Russian diplomats persona non grata on March 22 amid a spy scandal.