Transnistria appeals to Russia to protect it from Moldova’s ‘economic war’

Politicians in the breakaway region of Transnistria on Wednesday appealed to Russia for protection from what they described as an “economic war” being waged by Moldova, local news agency Novosti Pridnestrovya reported.

The unrecognised region’s parliament issued a resolution calling on Russia to implement “measures to protect Transnistria amid increasing pressure from Moldova”, noting that over 220,000 people in Transnistria held Russian passports and highlighting the region’s “unique positive experience of Russian peacekeeping efforts”.

The resolution called on the UN and other international bodies to prevent the “rights and freedoms” of Transnistria residents from being violated and to “prevent provocations leading to an escalation of tensions”.

The move comes in response to customs regulations introduced by Moldova at the start of the year which raised import and export duties for companies registered in Transnistria.

Transnistria, which is internationally recognised as part of Moldova, declared independence in 1990, leading to a civil war with Chișinău following the collapse of the Soviet Union. The predominantly Russian-speaking region borders Ukraine and is home to a sizeable Russian minority, as well as a Russian military base where around 1,500 troops are stationed.

Wednesday’s gathering of separatist deputies was only the seventh of its kind, with the last such congress in 2006 leading to a referendum on Transnistria becoming part of Russia. While the referendum resulted in an overwhelming majority vote in favour, it was not recognised as legitimate by the international community and was not acted upon by Russia.

Moldovan government spokesperson Daniel Vodă told Radio Chișinău that there was “no danger of escalation” in Transnistria following the resolution and dismissed the congress as part of a Russian-organised campaign to destabilise Moldova.

The Kremlin did not comment on Wednesday’s congress, which was rumoured to have intentionally been organised in advance of Vladimir Putin’s address to Russia’s Federal Assembly on Thursday.

Editor in chief — Kirill Martynov. Terms of use. Privacy policy.