Russia expels Estonian diplomat for spying

A man walks along a bridge in front of a Kremlin tower and the Russian Foreign Ministry building on the background in downtown Moscow on Jan 12, 2021. (ALEXANDER NEMENOV / AFP)

MOSCOW – Russia's foreign ministry said on Wednesday it had expelled an Estonian diplomat who was detained for suspected espionage the previous day and had given him 48 hours to leave the country.

Estonia on Tuesday accused Russia of detaining St Petersburg-based diplomat Mart Latte after a "set-up" it said was designed to make him look like a spy. 

Russia's foreign ministry said on Wednesday Latte had been gathering data for espionage purposes, activity it said was incompatible with his diplomatic status.

It dismissed Estonian denials of espionage, saying Moscow had what it called "incontrovertible" proof.

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