Venezuela, Spain to expel ambassadors as ‘persona non grata’

The Spanish government has declared Venezuela’s ambassador in Spain ‘persona non grata’ following an equivalent move by the Venezuelan government on Thursday, spokesman Inigo Mendez de Vigo said on Friday. The Venezuelan ambassador must leave Spain within the next 72 hours according to diplomatic protocol, de Vigo said. “The principle of reciprocity in diplomacy implies that we give the same treatment that they’ve given to the Spanish ambassador,” he said. Venezuela said on Thursday it was expelling the Spanish ambassador from Caracas in response to Spanish “aggressions,” Reuters said. The EU earlier imposed sanctions on senior officials of the socialist government.