Ireland refuses to issue new visas to Russian diplomats because of suspicions of espionage

Liza Brovko

The Irish government does not allow the Russian embassy in Dublin to rotate employees. He refuses to issue new visas to Russian diplomats because they are suspected of espionage.

The Irish Times writes about it.

Moscowʼs diplomatic presence in Ireland has halved. After the outbreak of full-scale war, the number of accredited diplomats and administrative staff at the embassy decreased from 30 people to 14. In particular, in March 2022, the Irish government expelled four diplomats on suspicion of espionage.

Two Russian military attachés assigned to Ireland also disappeared from the country. Such officers usually work closely with or directly report to Russian intelligence agencies when abroad.

Irish security services have long suspected that Russian diplomatic facilities in Ireland are operating as fronts for various espionage activities. Meanwhile, a spokesman for the Russian embassy accused the Irish Ministry of Foreign Affairs of reducing the number of staff and "unacceptable visa and accreditation policies".

Back in 2020, the Irish government used national security legislation to block permission to build a Russian embassy, which wanted to expand its facilities in the country, over concerns that it would increase the threat of espionage.