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Transdniestria leader sees "threat to peace" in calls to transform peacekeeping mission

December 24, 2015, 20:33 UTC+3 TIRASPOL

Yevgeny Shevchuk commented Moldova’s calls to replace the Russian military contingent in Transdniestria with a civil mission under international mandat

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Russian peacekeepers in Transdniestria

Russian peacekeepers in Transdniestria

© Sergey Karpov/TASS Archive

TIRASPOL, Transdniestria, December 24 /TASS/. A new war may flare up between Moldova and its unrecognized Republic of Transdniestria if the Russian peacekeepers stop separating them, Transdniestria’s leader Yevgeny Shevchuk said on Thursday.

"With an extensive list of contradictions, which Chisinau and Tiraspol have today, any calls to transform the peacekeeping operation are not just remarks but a threat to peace," Shevchuk said commenting Moldova’s calls to replace the Russian military contingent in Transdniestria with a civil mission under international mandate.

According to him, Ukraine and Moldova have increased pressure on Moldova this year. Kiev and Chisinau have started coordinating their actions. "They are imposing joint restrictions on our foreign economic activities to lower our abilities and choke us economically," Shevchuk said.

He said that the Russian peacekeeping operation was being carried out in difficult conditions. "It is a disengagement force in trouble spots such as the city of Bendery and the Dubossary district where the law enforcement bodies of Moldova and Transdniestira are functioning simultaneously. The probability of a conflict there is very high. What can we put up against them except for the peacekeepers? We have had the experience of civil observers - they vanished into thin air at the sound of the first shots in Bendery in 1992," the president of Transdniestria said.

He believes that Moldova’s first persons have been demanding the withdrawal of the Russian military from Transdniestria at the request of some Western countries.

A joint peacekeeping force of the military contingents of Russia, Moldova and Transdniestria are maintaining peace and stability in the buffer security zone of the Transdniestrian conflict. The Russian blue helmets arrived in Transdniestria during an armed conflict with Moldova in 1992.

Ukraine has denounced an agreement with Russia for supplying the Russian peacekeepers deployed in Transdniestria.

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