Wednesday 16 January 2019

Ambassador: expelling diplomat 'unwarranted'

Yuri Filatov
Yuri Filatov
Wayne O'Connor

Wayne O'Connor

Russia's ambassador to Ireland insists the recent expulsions of diplomats is unlikely to harm future relations.

But Ambassador Yury Filatov warned common sense is needed as the fallout after the poisoning of a double-agent in the UK continues.

He defended Russia's decision to expel an Irish diplomat from Moscow last week as a reaction to Ireland revoking the diplomatic status of a Russian official based in Dublin.

He described the Irish decision as "unwarranted" and "unfortunate".

However, Mr Filatov is confident Russian and Irish authorities can continue to engage with each other positively.

Mr Filatov was speaking as Russia outlined three sets of questions it wants addressed by Britain, France and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) about the nerve agent attack on Sergei Skripal (66) and his daughter Yulia (33) in the UK last month. Investigators in the UK have concluded the poisoning involved a Russian nerve agent.

When asked what he wanted from the Irish Government, Mr Filatov said: "We all have to use our common sense as much as we can. What we have from London is political posturing."

He also defended Russia's expulsion of an Irish diplomat last week after 29 countries revoked the diplomatic status of Russian officials.

Irish Independent

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