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New Zealand considers expelling Russian ambassador over events in Ukraine

New Zealand announces new package of sanctions
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The position of the New Zealand government regarding the presence of Russian Ambassador Georgy Zuev in the country has changed after recent statements by Russian President Vladimir Putin. Now the authorities are actively considering the possibility of expelling the diplomat in connection with the events in Ukraine.

This was stated by the Minister for Foreign Affairs of New Zealand Nanaiya Mahuta. She stressed that the country kept diplomatic channels open in “the hope that there is still room for diplomacy.” transmits RNZ on Thursday 22 September. However, decisions on holding referendums on the annexation of territories that came under Russian control during the special operation lead to an escalation of tension, the minister said.

“New Zealand’s position is to keep diplomatic channels open in order to de-escalate the situation. But, again, our position depends on Putin’s actions. <…> At the moment, when our prime minister is at the UN General Assembly, I I’m sure there will be a lot of discussion about the next steps,” Mahuta said.

The minister stressed that the decision to expel the Russian ambassador could be made quickly.

New Zealand has become one of the countries that joined the anti-Russian sanctions against the background of the special operation of the Russian Federation. The state imposed restrictions on Russian citizens and businesses, as well as against the Russian army. In addition, Wellington decided in August to send its instructors to the UK to train the Ukrainian military.

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