Four Polish diplomats were on Friday ordered out of Russia in retaliation for Warsaw’s expulsion of four Russian diplomats over a nerve agent attack in Britain.
The Polish ambassador to Russia was on Friday summoned to the foreign ministry in Moscow after Warsaw moved to expel Russian diplomats in response to the poisoning of ex-spy Sergei Skripal in the UK earlier this month.
The Polish ambassador, Włodzimierz Marciniak, was told that four Polish diplomats would have to leave Russia by April 7, the foreign ministry in Warsaw said on Twitter.
Ambassadors from Poland, Australia, Belgium, Croatia, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Sweden and Ukraine were all seen at the foreign ministry in Moscow on Friday, according to reports.
The Russian foreign ministry said it summoned representatives of “countries that have taken unfriendly action against Russia in solidarity with Britain because of the Skripal affair.”
It added that “the envoys will be handed protest notes and told about the Russian side’s retaliatory measures.”
London has expelled 23 Russian diplomats believed to be intelligence agents after it blamed Moscow for the March 4 poisoning of Skripal and his daughter Yulia.
The pair was attacked with a suspected nerve agent in Salisbury, southern England, and are reportedly still fighting for their lives in hospital.
But Russia denied poisoning Skripal and his daughter.
A number of Western countries have also expelled Russian diplomats, acting in solidarity with the UK.
So far, more than 140 Russian diplomats have been expelled from more than 20 countries and NATO.
Poland on Monday announced it would expel four Russian diplomats.
Russia on Thursday said it was expelling 60 US diplomats and announced that representatives of other countries would follow.