Russia is expelling 14 Bulgarian diplomats in retaliation for the expulsion of 70 Russian diplomat and embassy staff in June, Russia's TASS agency reported.
The expulsion of the 70 Russian diplomats from Bulgaria was announced by then Prime Minister Kiril Petkov on June 28, further souring bilateral relations. Russian Ambassador Eleonora Mitrofanova blamed the Us and the UK for the Bulgarian decision, said that the Embassy would be practically unable to operate and might shut down, and that her country was considering severing bilateral relations.
TASS quotes the Foreign Ministry in Moscow as saying Friday that Bulgaria's Ambassador to Moscow, Atanas Krustin, was presented a note declaring persona non grata 14 staff members of the Bulgarian Embassy and consular services in Russia.
"We are convinced that the unfriendly steps against Russia have nothing to do with the national interests of Bulgaria and its people," the Russian Foreign Ministry said in its Friday statement.