TIRASPOL, December 30 (Itar-Tass) —— Transdniestrian President Elect Yevgeny Shevchuk was inaugurated on Friday in the attendance of former head and founder of the unrecognized republic Igor Smirnov, ministers, deputies and foreign guests, among them Russian Ambassador to Chisinau Valery Kuzmin.
The ceremony was held at the Transdniestrian State Drama and Comedy Theater. Shevchuk put his right hand on the Transdniestrian constitution, took an oath of allegiance and signed up the oath text in the three official languages of the republic – Russian, Moldovan and Ukrainian. Then Smirnov, who had led the republic for 20 years, put the red-and-green presidential band on Shevchuk and congratulated him on the inauguration. Smirnov was awarded the title of the First President of the Transdniestrian Moldovan Republic.
Shevchuk said in his inaugural speech that he would seek international recognition of the republic and strengthen strategic relations with Russia and neighborly relations with Ukraine and Moldova. “Hopefully, our partners understand that Transdniestria will bring stability to the region only if it develops,” he said.
The latest election strengthened the image of Transdniestria on the international scene, Shevchuk said. He said he wished to develop earlier achievements and fulfill the Transdniestrian dream of a worthy living.
Transdniestria has a very complicated socioeconomic position, Shevchuk said. “Only an unwise optimist can deny the dismal reality –the budget deficit and villages deserted by their residents who move abroad. Yet we must not be scared. Fear is paralyzing. It is possible to revive Transdniestria only with common efforts,” he said.
Shevchuk won the second round of the presidential election with 73% of ballots. His rival, Speaker Anatoly Kaminsky, gained 19% of votes.