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An eye for an eye: EU declares Benin envoy 'persona non grata'

An eye for an eye: EU declares Benin envoy 'persona non grata'

Benin

The head of the mission of the Republic of Benin to the European Union has been declared persona non grata by the EU Council according to an official communication dated December 19, 2019.

Ambassador Zacharie Richard Akplogan, by the declaration will no longer receive diplomatic treatment and no longer represents his country in the eyes of the EU.

The statement confirmed that it was in retaliation to an earlier move by the West African nation which expelled the EU envoy weeks back. Benin accused him of meddling in local politics.

This is a response to the decision by the Beninese government to declare the head of the EU delegation to Benin as persona non grata.

“This is a response to the decision by the Beninese government to declare the head of the EU delegation to Benin as persona non grata.

“The EU considers this declaration as wholly unwarranted and contrary to the EU’s objective of developing relations and building partnerships in third countries,” the statement added.

Benin is not the only African country to go down the path of expelling meddlesome diplomats. Rwanda, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Somalia have in the last few months thrown out ambassadors.

  • Malawi ordered EU ambassador to leave
  • The Zambian government has asked the US envoy to be recalled
  • Rwanda ‘expelled’ German ambassador in March 2019
  • Somalia sacked UN envoy over interference with sovereignty
  • DRC ordered EU envoy to leave in December 2018
  • Burundi closed UN offices in the country
  • EU recalled its ambassador to Tanzania over deteriorating relations

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