Russian Ambassador needs to go

The Russian Ambassador’s continued presence in New Zealand is increasingly untenable with the ongoing atrocities in Ukraine and the Russian Embassy’s spreading of disinformation, National’s Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Gerry Brownlee says.

“In recent weeks I have called for the expulsion of the Russian Ambassador. It is now reported that the Select Committee has called for the Ambassador to appear before it, to answer for his government’s invasion of Ukraine and the human rights violations that have resulted from it.

“I reiterate today that it is time to expel the Russian Ambassador and his officials from New Zealand.

“It is utterly absurd that the Russian government can blacklist all New Zealand MPs and many heads of departments, yet we allow their Ambassador to New Zealand, President Putin’s mouthpiece, to sit in Wellington and spread disinformation about what the Russian military is doing in Ukraine.

“No New Zealander can watch their television or read the news, being confronted by the misery and suffering being inflicted on Ukrainians, without supporting the view that Russia must be isolated from the international community.

“If our small country can make a start by expelling the Russian Ambassador, that will be to our credit.”