Russia suspends its mission at NATO, shuts alliance’s office

MOSCOW (AP) – Russia says it’s suspending its mission at NATO and ordering the closure of the alliance’s office in Moscow in retaliation to NATO’s expulsion of Russian diplomats.

Earlier this month, NATO withdrew the accreditation of eight Russian officials to deny them access to its Brussels headquarters, saying it believes they have been secretly working as intelligence officers.

NATO also halved the size of Moscow’s team at its headquarters from 20 to 10.

Moscow has dismissed the accusations as baseless, and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov revealed the Russian response Monday, announcing the suspension of Russia’s mission at NATO and the closure of the alliance’s military liaison and information offices in Moscow.