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Moldovan opposition urges authorities to respond to annexation rhetoric in Romania

September 17, 2014, 19:21 UTC+3 CHISINAU

Presidential candidate Victor Ponta said on September 14 that by the 100th anniversary of Bessarabia’s annexation by Romania (1918), he would like to see the territory’s return into Romania

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Victor Ponta

Victor Ponta

© ITAR-TASS/Vadim Denisov

CHISINAU, September 17. /ITAR-TASS/. Moldova’s oppositional Socialist Party has criticized the authorities for keeping quiet about Romanian Prime Minister Victor Ponta’s calls for the unification of the two countries in 2018.

“We are demanding the Moldovan authorities should lodge an official note of protest with the Romanian leadership, which is obliged to present public apologies,” the socialists said. They warn that “the idea of Moldova’s takeover has long become the official ideology of the Romanian leadership”.

“The Moldovan authorities have more than once demonstrated criminal complacency at a time when Romanian officials are denying our country’s right for independent existence. It turns out that they share these ideas, disguised as 'European integration'. This is the sole explanation for the weird situation where students in Moldovan schools study the Romanian language and history instead of their own country’s,” Socialist legislators said. They called for banning political parties campaigning for the unification of the two countries.

Presidential candidate Victor Ponta said on September 14 that by the 100th anniversary of Bessarabia’s annexation by Romania (1918), he would like to see the territory’s return into Romania. This is not the first such statement by a senior official in Bucharest. In his New Year address, President Traian Basescu said that in 2014 the authorities should openly declare that Moldova was Romanian territory. He claimed that “the unification of the two states must become Romania’s third national priority after admission to NATO and the European Union. Basescu said that when his presidency expired in the autumn of 2014 he would dedicate himself to the promotion of that project. At the same time, he acknowledged that 70% of Romanians supported unification, while in Moldova the rate of popular support was far lower, 30%.

The Russian Foreign Ministry has described Victor Ponta’s statements as “irresponsible and unacceptable”. “We expect that the authorities in Chisinau will properly assess them,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said. “We do hope that a proper response will follow from Brussels and other European capitals."

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