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Four Russian diplomats leave Poland — embassy

Four Russian diplomats were expelled from Poland over the Skripal case

WARSAW, April 4. /TASS/. Four Russian diplomats expelled from Poland as part of a coordinated move over the so-called Skripal case have left the country, Vladimir Alexandrov, a spokesman for the Russian Embassy, informed TASS on Wednesday.

"To comply with the Polish side’s demands, the diplomats declared personae non gratae by Poland left the country by midnight on April 3," he said.

On March 4, former Russian military intelligence Colonel Sergei Skripal, 66, who had been convicted in Russia of spying for Great Britain and was later swapped for Russian intelligence officers, and his daughter Yulia, 33, were found unconscious on a bench near the Maltings shopping center in Salisbury, the UK. Police said they had allegedly been exposed to a nerve agent.

London immediately accused Russia of being involved, but failed to produce any evidence. British Prime Minister Theresa May rushed to blame Russia for "unlawful use of force" against her country. She identified the alleged substance used in the attack as the so-called Novichok nerve agent, allegedly developed in the former Soviet Union. Subsequently, the UK expelled 23 Russian diplomats and announced other restrictive measures against Moscow. Russia has flatly rejected these allegations pointing out that neither the Soviet Union nor Russia had any programs to develop that substance.

Some European countries, along with the US, Canada and Australia, decided to expel more than 100 Russian diplomats over the Skripal episode in solidarity with Britain. The Russian Foreign Ministry said last week tit-for-tat measures would be taken against the countries that expelled Russian diplomats.