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Tags: russia | un | us | mission | diplomacy | war | peace

Report: US Calls 12 Russian UN Diplomats 'Persona Non Grata,' Told to Leave US by March 7

Vasily Nebenzya
Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the United Nations, Ambassador Vasily Nebenzya speaks during a hybrid press briefing at the United Nations headquarters on Monday in New York. (Photo by Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images)

By    |   Monday, 28 February 2022 04:23 PM EST

Russian United Nations Permanent Representative Vasily Nebenzya told reporters the United States is designating 12 Russian UN diplomats as "persona non grata," and wants them out of the country by March 7.

“[Russian United Nations] ambassador tells reporters [United States] notified him they are designating 12 [United Nations] diplomats from the Russian Mission as "Persona Non Grata," and demanding they leave by March 7,” Voice of America United Nations correspondent Margaret Besheer posted on Twitter Monday.

In addition to Nebenzya, there are 12 deputy representatives listed on the Russian UN Permanent Mission website, including First Deputy Permanent Representative Dmitry Polyanskiy, Deputy Permanent Representative Dmitry Chumakov, Deputy Permanent Representative Anna Evstigneeva, Deputy Permanent Repressentative Gennady Kuzmin, Counsellor Ivan Khoroshev, Senior Counsellor Stepan Kuzmenkov, Senior Counsellor Evgeny Kalgin, Senior Counsellor Sergei Leonidchenko, Senior Counsellor Evgeny Varganov, Counsellor Fedor Strhizhovskiy, Senior Counsellor Sergey Efimenko, and Counsellor Bulat Biktimirov.

The tweet did not say if these were the individuals the U.S. designated as "unwelcome," but no other diplomatic staff was listed for the mission by Russia.

It is also not clear if the 12 with the designation included Nebenzya.

The Russian Mission to the UN was established under the organization’s 1945 charter, with an agreement that the United States would host the mission signed two years later, according to the mission's website.

Since 1991 and the fall of the former Soviet Union (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) , the mission has been representing the Russian Federation, a "continuator state" of the USSR, according to the website.

In November 2021, the U.S. ordered the removal of 27 Russian diplomats and their families by Jan. 30, with a similar number told to leave by the end of June, the Russian News Agency TASS reported at the time.

On Feb. 24, the Associated Press reported that the United States expelled the second-ranking diplomat in Washington, D.C., to retaliate against Russia for booting out the second-ranked U.S. diplomat from Moscow earlier in the month.

An unidentified U.S. official told the AP then that the expulsion was "as a direct response to the unprovoked Russian expulsion of our deputy chief of mission."

Despite Russia's military invasion of Ukraine, the AP said that the diplomatic "tit-for-tat" battle of expulsions dates to 2017 when the administration of former President Barack Obama closed several Russian missions in the country.

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The Russian United Nations ambassador said the United States is designating 12 Russian UN diplomats as "persona non grata," and wants them out of the country by March 7.
russia, un, us, mission, diplomacy, war, peace
Monday, 28 February 2022 04:23 PM
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