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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

4 Russian Diplomats Are Violently Attacked in Skopje

Russia sent a note of protest to Macedonia on Monday urging the Balkan state to conduct a fast and objective investigation into a violent attack on four Russian diplomats over the weekend, national media reported.

Macedonian media speculated the fight had been over a young woman, while the Interior Ministry said it was doing all it could "to find and apprehend the attackers."

The diplomats were just about to leave a cafe in Macedonia's capital, Skopje, late Saturday when an unknown man approached them and hit one of them, Russian television reported.

"Soon afterward, between 10 and 12 people were taking part in the attack on the four diplomats," Channel One television reported. "The attackers used glass bottles and brass knuckles."

The diplomats were badly hurt and taken to hospital. They have since been discharged and are in satisfactory condition.

Borce Pesevski, a spokesman for the Macedonian police, said that at around 1:30 a.m. local time Sunday "there was an argument between a dozen people at a bar, an argument that continued outside on the sidewalk.

"Then six to seven unknown assailants physically attacked four others, all employees in the Russian embassy," he said. "They were beaten up [and] sustained injuries, and after receiving medical treatment they were released."

Moscow expects Macedonia to give an official explanation once the incident has been investigated, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Mikhail Kamynin said, Interfax reported.