Moldova government does not give up amid economic crisis, tension with Russia | Political News

Moldova’s pro-Western government has resigned after a turbulent 18 months in power marked by economic turmoil and the spillover effects of Russia’s war in neighboring Ukraine.

In the latest tensions with Moscow over the war, the government said shortly before Prime Minister Natalia Gavrilita announced her resignation that a Russian missile had violation of Moldova’s airspaceand summoned the Russian ambassador to protest.

President Maia Sandu accepted Gavrilita’s decision on Friday and nominated her defense adviser Dorin Recean as prime minister. She shows no sign of abandoning her pro-Western policies, including seeking to join the European Union.

“Thank you so much for your great sacrifice and effort to lead the country in a time of so many crises,” Sandu wrote on Facebook.

“Despite the unprecedented challenges, the country has been run responsibly, with a lot of care and dedicated work. We have stability, peace and development – ​​where others want war and bankruptcy.”

Sandu said she wants to focus on reforming key areas such as the Moldovan economy and the judicial sector.

“I know that we need solidarity and a lot of work to get through the difficult period we are facing,” she said. “The difficulties of 2022 have put some of our plans on hold, but they have not stopped us.”

Recean, a 48-year-old economist who served as interior minister from 2012 to 2015, will have 15 days to form a new government to submit to parliament for a vote.

He said he plans to continue pursuing EU membership and that his government’s priorities will be order and discipline, breathing new life into the economy as well as peace and stability.

Energy blackmail, soaring inflation

Gavrilita’s reign as prime minister was marked by a long string of problems, many of which stemmed from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. These include a severe energy crisis after Moscow dramatically reduced supplies to Moldova and soaring inflation.

The former Soviet republic of 2.5 million people also saw an influx of Ukrainian refugees last year. It has suffered a power cut following Russian air strikes on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure, has struggled to break free of its dependence on Russian gas, and most recently, has seen a missile by Russia from the war passed through its sky.

Gavrilita said no one expected her government “to have to deal with so many crises caused by Russian aggression in Ukraine”.

Gavrilita said: “I took over the government with the mandate of anti-corruption, pro-development and pro-European at a time when corruption schemes have invaded all institutions and the oligarchs feel untouchable. “We were immediately confronted with energy blackmail and those who did it hoped that we would give in.”

She added: “The wager of our country’s enemies is that we will act like previous governments, who gave up energy interests, who betrayed the national interest. in exchange for short-term benefits”.

Sharp price increases, especially for Russian gas, led to street protests last year in which protesters called for the government and Sandu to step down.

The protests, organized by the party of exiled opposition politician Ilan Shor, marked the most serious political challenge for Sandu since she won a landslide victory in the 2020 elections on a pro-support platform. European Union and anti-corruption.

Chisinau has described the protests as part of a Kremlin-sponsored campaign to destabilize the government.

“I believe in the Moldovan people. I believe in Moldova,” said Gavrilita. “I believe we will be able to overcome all difficulties and challenges.”

Join to promote the EU

Gavrilita became prime minister in August 2021 after her pro-European Party of Action and Solidarity (PAS) won a parliamentary majority with its mandate to crack down on corruption.

EU leaders accepted Moldova as their candidate for membership last year in a diplomatic victory for Sandu. The government has outlined reforms to accelerate accession to the 27-nation bloc and work to diversify energy supplies.

Russia, which has troops in Moldova’s breakaway Transdniestria region, has protested the possibility of the former Soviet republics joining the EU, and Moldova’s intelligence service has confirmed Ukrainian President Volodymyr’s accusations. Zelenskyy on Thursday that Russia was acting to destabilize Moldova.

Moldova’s Foreign Ministry strongly criticized Moscow after summoning its ambassador over a Russian missile it said flew over Moldova’s airspace before entering Ukrainian airspace on Friday.

“We firmly reject the latest unfriendly actions and statements against Moldova, which are completely unacceptable to our people,” the ministry said in a statement.

“We call on the Russian Federation to stop its military aggression against a neighboring country, which has resulted in many human casualties and material damage.”


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