Statement on the Russian decision to expel Swedish diplomats and close Consulates-General
The Swedish Ambassador in Moscow has today attended a meeting at the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
At the meeting, Russian officials announced the expulsion of five Swedish diplomats. According to Russia, this decision is in response to Sweden’s decision on 25 April to expel five Russian Embassy officials.
Russia also announced that it has decided that the Swedish Consulate-General in St Petersburg must close by 1 September, and that Russia will close its Consulate-General in Gothenburg.
Minister for Foreign Affairs Tobias Billström:
“Russia’s decision is highly regrettable. Russia has chosen to expel Swedish diplomats who have acted within the framework of the Vienna Convention and engaged in normal diplomatic activities in Russia."
“We also deeply regret the Russian decision concerning the Consulate-General in St Petersburg. The Consulate-General has been an engine for bilateral international cooperation between Russia and Sweden in a broad sense. Today’s decision is therefore further confirmation of the negative political developments in Russia and the country’s international isolation.”
The Russian Embassy officials were expelled in April for having conducted activities that were inconsistent with the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations.