Russia calls for probe into break-in at diplomatic residence in Netherlands

Moscow, Oct 18 (EFE).- Russia called Friday on the Netherlands to investigate a break-in at a Russian Embassy-owned building in The Hague, an incident that could further escalate diplomatic tensions.

"We're operating on the assumption that Dutch authorities will take comprehensive measures to identify the culprits in this crime," the Russian Foreign Affairs Ministry said on its Web site.

The residence of a Russian diplomat was burglarized while that individual was away on vacation. Russia's diplomatic mission learned of the incident after other embassy employees on Thursday night noticed signs of a break-in at the home.

Authorities have not yet determined if anything was stolen during the break-in, which Netherlands Foreign Affairs Minister Frans Timmermans has denounced.

Police are working with Russian authorities to investigate the incident, local television reported, citing Timmermans.

Tensions between the Netherlands and Russia flared up recently when 30 people on board the Dutch-flagged Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise were arrested last month after an attempt to board an oil platform operated by Russian state energy giant Gazprom in the Barents Sea.

The 28 Greenpeace activists, including a pair of Dutch citizens, and two journalists have been formally charged in Russia with piracy.

On Oct. 5, a Russian diplomat, Dimitri Borodin, was arrested at his residence in The Hague for alleged child abuse, an incident slammed by the Russian government.

The Netherlands subsequently apologized for the arrest and acknowledged that police had violated the Vienna Convention on diplomatic immunity.

A few days later, the Netherlands demanded an explanation from Russia after a Dutch diplomat was beaten at his residence in Moscow by unknown intruders, an incident the Kremlin has lamented and pledged to investigate.

Bilateral tensions have flared up as the countries celebrate the 400th anniversary of their diplomatic relations.

The agenda includes a visit to Moscow by the Dutch king and queen, a trip that has not been postponed despite the complicated situation.