Albania expels Iranian diplomats for 'damaging' its national security

TIRANA (Reuters) - Albania has expelled Iran's ambassador and another diplomat for 'damaging its national security', the foreign ministry said on Wednesday. Albania did not identify the two, and did not say when they were expelled or if they had left the NATO member country, but told Reuters it had consulted its alliance partners on the decision

Reuters December 20, 2018 05:05:32 IST
Albania expels Iranian diplomats for 'damaging' its national security

Albania expels Iranian diplomats for damaging its national security

TIRANA (Reuters) - Albania has expelled Iran's ambassador and another diplomat for "damaging its national security", the foreign ministry said on Wednesday.

Albania did not identify the two, and did not say when they were expelled or if they had left the NATO member country, but told Reuters it had consulted its alliance partners on the decision. An Iranian diplomat contacted by Reuters did not answer questions, and phone calls to the Iranian Embassy in Tirana went unanswered.

U.S. national security adviser John Bolton, who played a major role in U.S. President Donald Trump's order in May to pull the United States out of the 2015 international nuclear deal with Iran, publicly supported Albania's decision.

"Prime Minister Edi Rama of Albania just expelled the Iranian ambassador, signaling to Iran's leaders that their support for terrorism will not be tolerated," Bolton said in a Twitter post. "We stand with PM Rama and the Albanian people as they stand up to Iran's reckless behaviour in Europe and across the globe."

Since Albania took in about 3,000 members of the banned Iranian opposition group, the Mujahedin-e Khalq, it has entered an arena of propaganda clashes between its members and Iranian efforts to discredit them.

Bolton and former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani, now one of Trump's lawyers, have visited the group in Albania, where it built a big camp near the village of Manze on the Adriatic Sea.

(Reporting by Benet Koleka in Tirana; editing by Grant McCool)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources
| Reuters
World

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources | Reuters

By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States

China's Xi says navy should become world class
| Reuters
World

China's Xi says navy should become world class | Reuters

BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.