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EU urges Moldova to investigate €1 bln embezzlement

February 15, 18:11 UTC+3 BRUSSELS
The European Union has also called for an audit of banks implicated in the corruption schemes in close collaboration with the International Monetary Fund
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© Sergei Bobylev/TASS

BRUSSELS, February 15. /TASS/. European Union has called for a thorough and impartial investigation into the embezzlement of €1 billion from Moldova’s banking system in which the country’s pro-European leadership members are suspected, the Council of the EU said in a statement on Monday.

The European Union has also called for an audit of banks implicated in the corruption schemes in close collaboration with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

"The Council calls on the authorities of the Republic of Moldova to ensure that the cases of fraud that affected its banking system in 2014 are made subject to a thorough, impartial investigation, also with a view to recovering the diverted funds and to bringing those responsible to justice," the Council said.

"It urges the authorities to undertake audits of the three banks under special supervision through high quality reports and appropriate follow-up action, in close collaboration with the IMF as well as consider a screening of the systemic risks in the banking sector," the statement said.

The Council recommended the Moldovan leadership to raise awareness among the citizens of about benefits expected from reforms and economic integration with the EU. Chisinau should also "improve the national legislation in order to limit the concentration of media ownership and guarantee pluralism," it said.

In early 2015, €1 billion disappeared from three Moldovan banks in a scandal involving high-ranking officials. Tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets in Chisinau leading to a further investigation.

The probe led to an arrest of the country’s former prime minister, Vlad Filat, the resignation of two governments and the collapse of the ruling Alliance for European Integration set up by the Democratic, Liberal-Democratic and Liberal parties.

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