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Russian Expulsion Counterproductive, Canada Says

OTTAWA (Reuters) -- Moscow's decision to expel two Canadian NATO officials is setting back efforts to reengage Russia, Canada has said as it summoned the Russian ambassador to provide an explanation.

"Canada strongly regrets Russia's decision to expel two Canadians serving at the NATO Information Office in Moscow," said Catherine Loubier, spokeswoman for Foreign Minister Lawrence Cannon.

"Canada and NATO allies have been seeking ways to reengage Russia. Russia's decision to expel NATO officials is counterproductive to this effort," she said in a statement.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said it was revoking the diplomatic accreditation of the two officials in response to the Western alliance's expulsion of two Russian diplomats.