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President’s suspension might spark unrest in Moldova - Russian MP

January 03, 2018, 0:05 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Earlier in the day, Moldova’s Constitutional Court ruled to approve cabinet members’ appointments ignoring the incumbent president’s opinion

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MOSCOW, January 3. /TASS/. Moldovan President Igor Dodon’s suspension might spark unrest in the country, Leonid Kalashnikov, the chair of Russia’s State Duma Committee for CIS Affairs, European Integration and Ties with Compatriots, told TASS on Tuesday.

Earlier in the day, Moldova’s Constitutional Court ruled to approve cabinet members’ appointments ignoring the incumbent president’s opinion. Dodon branded the ruling as illegal.

"Dodon can resist it by getting people to take to the streets. To my mind, it might also spark unrest because voters who elected Dodon as president are unlikely to accept the current state of affairs," Kalashnikov said. "I suppose it might happen in coming days."

Moldova’s Constitutional Court gave the ruling "in compliance with the policy to derail rapprochement with Russia and the Eurasian Union, which Dodon advocates for," the Russian member of parliament said. "It happened for the first time when they did it just for one day to approve the defense minister. It turned out to be possible under the law."

"In a normal country a president is to be impeached under any legislation, whereas their Constitutional Court can suspend him for any period of time," he said with indignation.

Kalashnikov said it was not accidental that the New Year season had been chosen to suspend the president as well as in the run-up to the general election.

"We supposed they might take advantage, although the parliamentary election is scheduled. Dodon’s opponents are scared of the election. They did it on purpose just now to weaken pro-Eurasian forces," the deputy concluded.


History of the issue

On December 20, the ruling Democratic Party said five ministers and two deputy prime ministers were to be appointed. Dodon approved resignations, but declined to approve new appointees, explaining that some candidates "have questionable reputations." Following the president’s refusal, deputies of the Democratic Party, which formed the cabinet, filed a request with the Constitutional Court to look into the case.

On Tuesday, the Court allowed either the prime minister or parliamentary speaker to provisionally suspend the president to appoint new cabinet members. Dodon prefers not to put his signature under documents he disapproves of. Under the law, he has the right to reject submitted candidates twice and then, according to the Constitutional Court’s ruling, either the speaker or prime minister is allowed to sign the decree, suspending the president for a while.

The procedure has already been applied when on October 20 the Constitutional Court allowed Speaker Andrian Candu to sign a decree appointing Eugen Sturza as defense minister. The president had declined to appoint Sturza twice.

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