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A Russian diplomat in Bulgaria accused of espionage – Declared persona non grata

According to the Bulgarian Foreign Ministry, Bulgaria accused a Russian diplomat of collecting information about US servicemen who are visiting the country for military drills. The Russian military attache was declared persona non grata and has to leave Bulgaria within 72 hours.

The Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on its website:

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Bulgaria announced that a diplomat from the Russian Embassy in Sofia is persona non grata due to actions incompatible with the diplomatic status and was given 72 hours to leave the country.

A diplomatic note with this content was handed to the Deputy Head of the Russian Embassy, who was summoned to the Foreign Ministry earlier today.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Ekaterina Zaharieva received a letter from the Chief Prosecutor Ivan Geshev informing that pre-trial proceedings had established how the diplomat had collected information, which is a state secret.

This act constitutes a crime under article 104 paragraph 1 of the Criminal Code. As the perpetrator enjoyed immunity under the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, the pre-trial proceedings were terminated.”

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