Russia calls diplomat expulsions a ‘mockery’ of the law

MOSCOW — Russia’s top diplomat on Thursday described the British accusations against Moscow over the nerve agent poisoning of an ex-spy as a mockery of international law and said Russia will push to find out the truth.

Britain has blamed Russia for the March 4 poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter. In response, more than two dozen Western allies including Britain, the U.S. and NATO have ordered out over 150 Russian diplomats in a show of solidarity. Moscow has fiercely denied its involvement in the nerve agent attack and expelled an equal number of envoys. The diplomatic turmoil has hit lows unseen even at the height of the Cold War.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov insisted that the poisoning case was fabricated by Britain to “demonize” Russia.

“The so-called Skripal case has been used as a fictitious, orchestrated pretext for the unfounded massive expulsions of Russian diplomats not only from the U.S. and Britain but also from a number of other countries who simply had their arms twisted,” Lavrov said at a conference in Moscow. “We have never seen such an open mockery of the international law, diplomatic ethics and elementary decorum.”

Early Thursday, three buses believed to be carrying expelled American diplomats departed from the U.S. Embassy in Moscow.

Before the morning departure, journalists outside the embassy compound saw people leaving

Article source: https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/russia-calls-diplomat-expulsions-mockery-of-the-law/2018/04/05/38261be4-38a7-11e8-af3c-2123715f78df_story.html

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