Russia halts mission to NATO, alliance's bodies in Moscow

Source: Xinhua| 2021-10-18 23:28:55|Editor: huaxia

MOSCOW, Oct. 18 (Xinhua) -- The Russian Foreign Ministry announced Monday that Moscow has decided to suspend the operation of the Russian Permanent Mission to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in retaliation for the alliance's "unfriendly actions."

Russia's ambassador to Belgium will be authorized for emergency contacts with the NATO headquarters, while an ambassador of the NATO member states in Moscow can perform similar functions, the ministry said in a statement.

Russia is also suspending the activities of the NATO Military Liaison Mission in Moscow and the accreditation of its staffers will be revoked on Nov. 1.

In addition, Russia is terminating the work of the NATO Information Office in Moscow.

The Russian side has informed the NATO International Secretariat of its decision.

NATO announced the expulsion of eight members of the Russian mission in Brussels on Oct. 6, calling them "undeclared Russian intelligence officers." Additionally, the number of Russian staff at the mission was reduced by half from 20 to 10.

Before that, the size of the Russian mission in Brussels was reduced twice unilaterally by the NATO in 2015 and 2018, after the alliance's decision on April 1, 2014 to suspend all practical civilian and military cooperation between the two sides. Enditem

KEY WORDS: Russia,NATO,Confrontation