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Moscow responds in kind after Austria expels Russian diplomat on suspicion of industrial espionage

Russia’s Foreign Ministry has lodged a complaint with the Austrian Ambassador in Moscow, following the expulsion of a Russian diplomat from Austria.According to the ministry’s press service, “guided by the principles of reciprocity,” an Austrian diplomat has been declared persona non grata.

Earlier in the day, the Austrian newspaper Kronen Zeitung reported that Vienna had declared a Russian diplomat persona non grata for the first time.

Both sides have yet to disclose the names of the expelled diplomats.

The Russian citizen in question is suspected of conducting industrial espionage at a high-tech company for many years, the newspaper said. Reportedly, he has been given until September 1 to leave Austria. According to Kronen Zeitung, an Austrian citizen who confessed to spying named the Russian diplomat as his handler. The Russian citizen refused to testify, citing diplomatic immunity.

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