Czech Republic asks Russia to pay for 2014 arms blast

Czech Republic asks Russia to pay for 2014 arms blast
# 28 June 2021 21:00 (UTC +04:00)

Authorities in the Czech Republic have asked Russia to pay compensation for damages caused by a deadly 2014 arms depot explosion, the Czech Foreign Ministry said Monday, APA reports quoting the MoscowTimes.

Czech Deputy Foreign Minister Martin Smolek delivered the compensation claim to Russia's Ambassador to Prague Alexander Zmeyevskiy, the Czech Foreign Ministry said.

The ministry's statement did not specify the amount of compensation Prague is seeking. The echo24.cz news website reported that the claim totals 650 million koruna, or 25.5 million euros.

Tensions spiraled between Russia and the Czech Republic this spring after Prague accused Russian military intelligence of being behind the 2014 explosion at an ammunition depot in the eastern village of Vrbětice that destroyed 50 tons of munitions and killed two workers.

In April, Prague expelled 18 Russian diplomats suspected of involvement in the blast, sparking tit-for-tat measures from Moscow, which expelled 20 Czech diplomats.

Moscow, which denies involvement in the Vrbětice blast, also designated the Czech Republic as an "unfriendly state," capping the number of the Czech embassy staff.

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