Russia expels Estonia's ambassador, informs the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Moscow. Estonia responds quickly by expelling the Russian ambassador in Tallinn.

A video still shows how Margus Laidre, Estonia's ambassador to Russia, leaves the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Moscow on Monday.
A video still shows how Margus Laidre, Estonia's ambassador to Russia, leaves the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Moscow on Monday.

Estonian Margus Laidre will be the first European ambassador to be expelled from Russia since the invasion of Ukraine. Estonia's Embassy in Moscow will be run by a ChargΓ© d'Affaires, i.e. A acting Head of Mission with considerably lower rank than an ambassador.

The Kremlin accuses Estonia of "total russophobia".

"The Estonian leadership has deliberately destroyed the entire span of relations with Russia," says a statement from the Ministry of Defense in Moscow, according to Russian Interfax.

Estonia responds to the Russian message by expelling the Russian ambassador in Tallinn.

The diplomatic dispute means that the already frosty relationship between the countries is freezing to ice. Since Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the NATO member Estonia has severely strangled his bilateral relations with Moscow, including by cutting down on the staff of the Russian Embassy in Tallinn – a measure that made the Kremlin look red.