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by Kirsteen Paterson
08 April 2022
'Withdraw from our city immediately': Edinburgh leader tells Russian diplomats they are 'no longer welcome'

Protesters demonstrate outside the Russian Consulate in Edinburgh

'Withdraw from our city immediately': Edinburgh leader tells Russian diplomats they are 'no longer welcome'

Adam McVey seeks 'immediate' withdrawal of Russian Consul

The Kremlin's man in Edinburgh has been told to leave Scotland's capital as diplomatic pressure grows over the war on Ukraine.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has already been asked to take action over the presence of Russian consul general Andrey Yakovlev.

Now the leader of City of Edinburgh Council has written directly to Russia's ambassador in London, Andrei Kelin, telling him to pull his team out of their Melville Street offices.

The townhouse has been the site of anti-war protests over the past month.

In the letter, council leader Adam McVey states that, in a unanimous vote last month, the council "made clear that the Russian consulate is no longer welcome in Edinburgh until Russia stops this illegal war and Russian troops leave Ukrainian soil" and tells Yakovlev: "I ask that you withdraw the consul from our city immediately."

The letter goes on: "We make clear that our city is not an enemy of the Russian people, we recognise the courageous actions across the Russian population who have expressed opposition to this war at great cost to themselves at the hands of their own government in Moscow.

"We are witnessing the actions of the government you represent, and the murder of brave Ukrainian civilians and soldiers – which will be investigated as war crimes in due course. Our wholehearted sympathy and thoughts are with the Ukrainian people is resisting the Russian Government’s illegal and senseless war."

The follows the council's decision to award the Freedom of the City to Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky and Kyiv mayor Vitali Klitschko.

The Russian embassy has been contacted for comment.

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