Along with the Latvian ambassador, Belarus has deported all diplomatic personnel, except for one maintenance worker, BelTA informs.
In response, Latvia has also expelled the Belarusian ambassador and all diplomats.
“The Ambassador is asked to leave Belarus within 24 hours. All diplomatic and administrative and technical staff of the embassy are also invited to leave Belarus within 48 hours. One administrative and technical staff member was left here to take care of the building,” said Belarusian Foreign Minister Uladzimir Makey.
Latvian Ambassador Einars Semanis was summoned to the Foreign Ministry of Belarus, while a group of people with red and green flags gathered outside the embassy building to protest.
The reason for the deportation was the replacement of the red-green flag by the head of the Latvian Foreign Ministry, Edgars Rinkēvičs, and Riga mayor Mārtiņš Staķis. The flag was replaced where the flags of the countries, participating in the World Hockey Championship, are flown.
Head of the Belarusian Foreign Ministry called the change of the national flag of Belarus in Riga “an act of state vandalism”.