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Moldovan legislator blasts PACE’s move as ploy to drag Chisinau into conflict with Russia

Samizdat |March 16, 2022

CHISINAU – Deputy Speaker of Parliament of Moldova Vlad Batrincea chided the declaration of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), which called the unrecognized state of Transnistria an “area of Russian occupation,” as an attempt to pull Moldova into the conflict in Ukraine. Speaking at a briefing in the Parliament Wednesday, the politician noted that the document was adopted without considering Moldova’s opinion, who did not vote on the declaration.

“We have said repeatedly that Moldova, being a neutral state, must not get involved in this conflict. This is the consensus between the opposition and the authorities. The introduction of this amendment is an attempt to pull our country into dangerous backstage geopolitical games. Some external forces want to get us involved in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. This is totally unacceptable,” Batrincea, who represents Moldova in PACE, said.

He noted that this amendment “was not put to a vote.”

“It would have been logical to ask for Moldova’s opinion, at least in an online mode, because this matter involves us directly, but this was not done. This decision was adopted in an emotionally-charged rush. We regret that Moldova was treated with such lack of respect yesterday, and that proper procedures were violated,” the deputy speaker concluded.

In turn, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Moldova Nikolai “Nicu” Popescu said Wednesday that the PACE declaration is advisory and does not affect legal processes. According to Popescu, the declaration will not affect Chisinau’s position at the Transnistrian settlement talks, and Moldova will retain its neutral position in the conflict in Ukraine, according to its neutral status, cemented in the Constitution of Moldova.

Peacekeepers in Transnistria
The unrecognized republic of Transnistria was established on September 2, 1990, on Moldovan territory on the left bank of Dniester River, inhabited by predominantly Russian-speakers. Local residents opposed the actions of Moldova’s radical politicians, who sought the republic’s separation from the USSR and unification with Romania. Moldovan officials attempted to resolve the situation by force, which ended up causing over 1,000 deaths in the conflict that followed, while tens of thousands were injured or became refugees.

The war came to an end after a peace deal was signed in July 1992 in Moscow, and Russian peacekeepers were deployed to the conflict zone. Since then, the peacekeepers have been ensuring tranquility and stability in the region in cooperation with both Moldovan and Transnistrian servicemen, which enables Chisinau and Tiraspol to hold talks to settle the conflict. The OSCE, Russia and Ukraine act as mediators and guarantors in these talks.

The Operational Group of Russian Forces of about 1,500 soldiers and officers is also stationed in Transnistria. Equipped with small arms, they support the peacekeeping operation and guard the ammunitions depot in Kolbasna, which stores over 20,000 tonnes of ordnance, relocated there after Soviet forces’ withdrawal from European states. Previously, the authorities of Transnistria blocked the evacuation of the ordnance amid an escalation with Chisinau.

The government of Moldova insists that the Operational Group must be withdrawn and insists on replacing peacekeepers with civilian observers. Tiraspol categorically opposes this, since it considers the Russian forces to be a guarantee of peace.

March 17, 2022 - Posted by | Aletho News |

1 Comment »

  1. Noted. The subject line caused me to single out this release, among the other floods of news (faux or real–who truly knows?) arriving in my inbox that are beyond my capacity for attention, for my perusal this morning. I wasn’t/am not disappointed–even as elements of the text/references to place/location names, etc., expose my vast ignorance of what goes on “over there.”

    Like

    Comment by roberthstiver | March 17, 2022 | Reply


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