Moscow to reduce Czech embassy staff in retaliatory move
"The Czech authorities' irresponsible and provocative behaviour delivered a painful blow to their own diplomatic service," a foreign ministry spokesperson said in a statement to AFP.
Prague said the move was an "important technical and administrative complication" in a statement issued by the foreign ministry.
Tensions have spiralled between the two countries after Prague accused Russian military intelligence of being behind a deadly explosion at an ammunition depot in eastern Czech Republic in 2014.
On Thursday, Prague said it would slap a ceiling on Russian diplomat numbers in line with the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, aiming at parity.
The Russian foreign ministry spokesperson said that Moscow would also limit the Czech embassy workforce in the Russian capital, meaning that the embassies of the two countries would have seven diplomats each by May 31.
The two countries' diplomatic missions will also have 25 administrative employees and 19 local hires.
"We will have to include the fact of this reduction in our talks on parity when it comes to the two embassies' workforce in the future," the foreign ministry said.