Zagreb (Times Of Ocean)- Croatia has expelled eighteen Russian diplomats and six administrative staff members working at the Russian embassy in its capital Zagreb, the Foreign Ministry said on Monday.
“Eighteen diplomats and six members of administrative staff (24 employees in total) at the Embassy of the Russian Federation have been asked to leave the Republic of Croatia,” a ministry statement said.
The statement added that Russian Ambassador Andrey Nesterenko was summoned to the ministry to protest Russia’s “brutal aggression” and “numerous crimes” against Ukraine.
Croatia has joined Poland, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Denmark, Austria, Japan and others in expelling Russian embassy personnel.
In addition to expelling diplomats, Japan has banned the import of coal, machinery, wood and vodka from Russia, frozen assets of Russia’s largest banks, including Sberbank and Alphabank, and banned 400 Russian lawmakers and senior military officials, as well as 20 Russian companies linked to military projects.
The move came after European Union nations, including France and Germany, announced this week they would expel more Russian diplomats. Russia denies targeting civilians in the conflict in Ukraine, where it says it has launched a “special operation”.
Austria has also announced that it is expelling four Russian diplomats for “incompatibility with their diplomatic duties.”
Poland previously expelled 45 Russian diplomats for “espionage and propaganda on behalf of the Kremlin.”
Since Russia launched its war on Ukraine on Feb 24, at least 382 Russian diplomats have been expelled from European countries.