Poland to expel 45 Russian diplomats for spying as smoke is seen rising from the Russian embassy amid claims its officials were burning secret documents
Poland is set to expel up to 45 diplomats from the Russian embassy in Warsaw for spying.
The director of Poland’s National Security Department Stanislaw Zaryn said that Russia’s ambassador Sergey Andreyev had now been summoned to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
He added: “The Internal Security Agency has identified 45 people - officers of Russian secret services and persons associated with them who had diplomatic status in Poland.
“The list was forwarded to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, it includes officers of the special services of the Russian Federation and people cooperating with them... people who conducted intelligence activities against Poland, but also against our allies.
"These are people who function within the framework of diplomatic status, but de facto conduct intelligence activities against Poland.”
He added that ABW investigations had revealed that Russian intelligence services were acting against Poland "ever more offensively and aggressively.”
Zaryn also said the ABW had detained a Polish citizen for spying for Russia's SVR intelligence service.
The man, who has been put under three months' temporary arrest by a court, worked at Warsaw's Civil Records Archive and is believed to have passed valuable operational information to the Russian Federation.
"This case is one element of broad activities of the Internal Security Agency that neutralises intelligence activities of the Russian Federation," Zaryn added.
Ahead of today’s announcement, smoke could last night be seen coming from the Russian embassy in the Polish capital, with claims that officials were ‘burning sensitive documents’.
Russia’s foreign ministry has said that Moscow says it will retaliate if its diplomats are expelled.