By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News
OSLO (Worthy News) – Moscow has warned it will retaliate after Norway expelled 15 Russian officials, saying they had abused their diplomatic status to spy in the Nordic nation.
The Kremlin will respond and is weighing up an “appropriate answer,” said a statement in Russian media.
It is the latest in a string of Russian expulsions since it launched the full-scale invasion of Ukraine last year.
Norway, a founding member of the NATO military alliance, defended its decision. Foreign minister Anniken Huitfeldt said Norway would not allow Moscow to use its embassy to conduct “covert intelligence activities.”
Norwegian authorities had monitored the individuals “over time” before they were declared persona non grata – unacceptable or unwelcome – a government statement said.
They will have to leave “shortly,” but more details about their activities or timing were not immediately released by Friday.
Norway shares a 197 kilometers (122-miles) land border with Russia in the Arctic, and their relations have suffered throughout the Ukraine crisis.
It comes at a time of heightened tensions in Scandinavia with Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.
Norway’s other neighbor Finland became a NATO member this month, while Sweden also hopes to join, citing security concerns.
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