Europe (Times Of Ocean)- The Netherlands expelled 17 Russian diplomats on Tuesday. The Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the government made the decision due to the national security threat posed by the diplomats operating secretly as intelligence officers.
The ministry said it is prepared for the possible consequences of the Russian decision.
Furthermore, it stated that the decision was made in consultation with other countries that made similar decisions, including the US, Poland, the Baltic states, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Bulgaria, and Montenegro.
The Belga news agency reported that Belgium has expelled 21 Russian diplomats for alleged spying and posing security threats.
The Irish Foreign Ministry told local media that it asked four Russian diplomats to leave because their activities were not in keeping with international diplomatic standards.
The Russian invasion of Ukraine has sparked international outrage, with the EU, the US, and the UK, among others, imposing tough financial sanctions on Moscow.
According to UN estimates, at least 1,179 civilians have been killed and 1,860 injured in Ukraine. The real number is likely to be much higher.
More than 3.9 million Ukrainians have fled to several European countries, and millions more are internally displaced, according to the UN refugee agency.