SOFIA, December 5. /TASS/. Russia’s Foreign Ministry has declared a Bulgarian embassy employee persona non grata in response to the October expulsion of a Russian diplomat, Bulgaria’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Thursday.
"Today, the Russian Foreign Ministry summoned Bulgarian Ambassador to Moscow Atanas Krastin to inform him that the ministry had declared a diplomat from our embassy in Moscow persona non grata based on the principle of reciprocity. The Bulgarian diplomat holds the same rank as the Russian diplomat declared persona non grata by Sofia in late October," the statement reads.
A Russian Foreign Ministry source earlier told TASS about the Bulgarian diplomat’s expulsion.
According to the Bulgarian Foreign Ministry, the diplomat declared persona non grata would leave Russia within 24 hours.
On October 29, Bulgaria declared a Russian embassy employee persona non grata, saying he was suspected of espionage. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Grushko said then that Moscow would consider retaliatory measures "in accordance with diplomatic practice."