Alexander Yakovenko, the Russian Ambassador to the UK, declared that the 23 diplomats expelled from the UK, as ordered by British Prime Minister Theresa May over the poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal, will leave tomorrow, on March 20.
Yakovenko also added that: “Together with family members we are talking about some 80 people.” The Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has also confirmed that Russia will definitely retaliate, telling journalists “Of course we will” when asked if it would respond in kind.
Sergei Lavrov considered it as a violation of international law that May is now refusing to work with Russia. He also added that Russia “has stopped paying attention” to allegations against them from UK. Among the large number of UK MPs who backed May in her decision, the UK Labour party Jeremy Corbyn was one of MPs who urged PM to calm down.
He has warned the diplomats that rushing to judgment without full evidence would lead to a “McCarthyite intolerance of dissent.” The UK foreign secretary Boris Johnson was among the MPs who backed the Prime Minister and accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of being behind the attack on Skripal. However, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov called the accusation “shocking and unforgivable.”
Tomorrow is the day when May is going to do what she said before. May has previously said that Russia was “culpable” for the attack and announced plans to expel 23 Russian diplomats, whom she described as “undeclared intelligence officers.”