January 18th, the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a statement saying that Russia decided to expel two Dutch diplomats and demanded them to leave the country within two weeks.
The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that this was a retaliatory measure against the expulsion of two Russian diplomats by the Netherlands at the end of last year.
According to Tass, two Russian diplomats in the Netherlands were expelled by the Dutch government last December. The reason is that they have engaged in activities that are inconsistent with their diplomatic status.
The Netherlands believes that the two deported diplomats are actually staff members of the Russian foreign intelligence service, and their main task in the Netherlands is to collect high-tech intelligence from the Netherlands.
This intelligence covers fields such as artificial intelligence, semiconductors and nanotechnology.
Russia believes that the accusations on the Dutch side are groundless and false accusations.