European Union advises non-essential staff to leave Ukraine amid tensions with Russia

Russia-Ukraine conflict: Tensions are rising between Ukraine and Russia.

Brussels:

The European Union has told non-essential staff at its diplomatic mission in Ukraine they must leave the country, but has not issued an evacuation order, a spokesperson said on Friday.

The European decision comes after the United States and Britain urged their nationals to leave Ukraine, after the White House warned it believed Russian forces were able to invade within days.

“We continue to assess the situation as it develops in line with our duty of care to our staff and in close consultation and coordination with EU Member States,” said Peter Stano.

“We are not evacuating. At this time, non-essential staff have the option to telecommute from outside the country.”

The European Union has had a delegation in kyiv since 1993, to promote ties between the bloc and Ukraine. The current ambassador to the EU is Estonian diplomat Matti Maasikas.

According to the EU Observer news site, Maasikas sent an email on Friday urging “all expatriate colleagues except essential staff… to leave Ukraine as soon as possible to telecommute from outside the country.” .

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Michelle J. Kelley