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CHISINAU, February 8 (Itar-Tass) – The Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office for conflicts, Ambassador Andrii Deshchytsia, concluded a two-day visit to Moldova on Thursday, February 7.
Deshchytsia met Moldovan chief negotiator Eugen Carpov in Chisinau and Transdniestrian leader Yevgeny Shevchuk and chief negotiator Nina Shtanski in Tiraspol to discuss the preparations for the next round of 5+2 talks on the Transdniestrian settlement process scheduled for 18 and 19 February in Lvov, Ukraine, the OSCE said.
“I have listened carefully to both sides and I believe we have a common understanding of the next stages of the negotiation process,” Deshchytsia said. “I underlined the need to come to Lvov with a positive approach and a willingness for real results.”
He discussed ways forward with the working group experts dealing with freedom of movement, specifically plans to open the Gura Bicului bridge, emphasising that these issues are high on the agenda.
Deshchytsia also met Moldovan Parliament Vice-Speaker Liliana Palihovici to discuss the inter-parliamentary dialogue agreed upon by the sides with the OSCE Chairperson last month.
“Bringing together representatives of parliamentary bodies can be a useful way of building confidence between the two sides,” Deshchytsia said.
The Special Representative’s meetings came just two weeks after Ukrainian Foreign Minister Leonid Kozhara made his first official visit as OSCE Chairperson to Moldova, where he emphasised that the Transdniestrian settlement process is the Chairmanship’s highest priority. Following the Chairperson’s personal invitation last month, Deshchytsia said he looked forward to welcoming Moldovan Prime Minister Vlad Filat and Transdniestrian leader Shevchuk to Lvov on the margins of the 5+2 talks.
The 5+2 format includes representatives of the sides, mediators and observers in the negotiation process – Moldova, Transdniestria, the OSCE, the Russian Federation, Ukraine, the US and the EU, the OSCE said.