War in Ukraine: Expulsion of Russian diplomats: “banal revenge” from Washington - Moscow

Anatoly Antonov has poured scorn on the United States' decision
Anatoly Antonov has poured scorn on the United States' decision Copyright Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
By Euronews with AFP
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All the latest developments from the war in Ukraine.

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Russia: one dead in Ukrainian strike against border region

One person was killed on Saturday in a Ukrainian strike against the Russian region of Belgorod, bordering Ukraine, according to local governor Vyacheslav Gladkov.

“This morning, the Ukrainian armed forces hit the village of Ourazovo in the Valuysk district with Grad-type missiles,” Gladkov wrote on Telegram. “One person was killed – a man who was in the street at the time of the strike,” he added.

According to him, 14 houses and a car were also damaged.

For its part, the Russian Defence Ministry said it had shot down three Ukrainian ballistic missiles over the Belgorod region on Saturday.

“Russian air defence forces destroyed the three Ukrainian missiles,” the ministry said in a statement.

A Ukrainian drone was also destroyed on Saturday morning in the Istrinsky district in the Moscow Oblast region, according to the Ministry of Defence, which denounced a new "attempt by the Kiev regime to commit a terrorist attack".

According to Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin, the downed drone was heading towards the capital. The incident caused no injuries or damage, he assured on Telegram.

Ukrainian assaults against Russian territory have increased in recent months, against the backdrop of a counter-offensive launched by Kyiv at the beginning of June.

Moscow: Expulsion of Russian diplomats is “banal revenge” from Washington

The expulsion of two Russian diplomats, announced on Friday by Washington, in apparent retaliation for a similar expulsion of American diplomats, is “banal revenge” - according to the Russian ambassador to the United States, Anatoly Antonov.

In a statement published on Telegram, he assured that “no argument” had been provided to him by the American side on the reasons for this expulsion.

“This does not do honour to American diplomacy,” he added.

The United States’ decision came following Moscow's expulsion of two American diplomats last month.

“In response to the Russian Federation's unfounded expulsion of two American diplomats from our embassy in Moscow, the State Department has taken the same action by declaring two Russian embassy officials in the United States personae non grata,” said Matthew Miller, Spokesperson for the United States Department of State.

On 14 September, Russia announced the removal of two American diplomats, accused of having served as "liaison" agents for Robert Shonov, a former Russian employee of the American consulate in Vladivostok arrested at the beginning of the year.

He was suspected of having transmitted secret information to the United States on the conflict in Ukraine.

Washington claims that Shonov was only hired by the consulate to carry out routine monitoring of freely accessible Russian media.

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