Estonia has expelled a Russian citizen from its soil, in reply to the individual's consistent incitement of pro-Kremlin agitation stemming back years before the current invasion of Ukraine, the Internal Security Service (ISS) says.
The ISS announced Wednesday evening that it had expelled Alexey Esakov, a Russian citizen, writing on its social media account that the current invasion had been: "Preceded by systematic and long term incitement of hatred," on the part of Esakov.
"We take this threat very seriously. Today Estonia expelled Russian citizen and long-time provocateur Alexey Esakov," the ISS continued in its post, adding in a separate post that Esakov had for many years propagated pro-Kremlin misinformation, collaborated with propaganda channels and organizations and incited discord and hatred, including justifying the current Russian aggression in Ukraine.
Russia's unprovoked war in Ukraine was preceded by systematic and long term incitement of hatred. We take this threat very seriously. Today Estonia expelled Russian citizen and long-time provocateur Alexey Esakov. pic.twitter.com/CxtkU2tadW— Kaitsepolitseiamet (@kaitsepolitsei) May 4, 2022
"For years, Esakov has publicly incited national hatred, spread Kremlin propaganda, collaborated with Kremlin propaganda channels, been one of the leaders of the immortal route, justified Russian aggression in Ukraine, participated in smuggling in eastern Ukraine," Kapo added.
Esakov had also been engaged in smuggling in the eastern part of Ukraine, the ISS, known in Estonia by its acronym Kapo, said.
The ISS added that he was a leading member of the Immortal Regiment (Russian: Bessmertny Polk) organization.
This group has regularly commemorated May 9, "Victory Day" in Russia, with processions and gatherings displaying pro-Kremlin insignia and slogans – a practice now banned under Estonian law.
The ISS post included security photos of him being handed over at a border checkpoint on Estonia's frontier with Russia and having his Russian passport checked.
Editor: Andrew Whyte