MINSK, July 16. /TASS/. Moldova’s President Igor Dodon has called to negotiate Transnistria’s status as part of Moldova.
"It is important to reach agreement on Transnistrian status as part of Moldova. It is very important to understand that negotiations with Transnistria are possible on the principles of Moldova’s obligatory neutrality and observance of Moldova’s statehood," Dodon said in an interview with Belarus’ ONT television channel on Sunday.
According to the Moldovan president, the Transnistrian problem is a "purely political problem." "Some political elites, regrettably, are unwilling to resolve this problem," he said.
Apart from that, he said that "Russia’s role is very important" as far as Transnistrian settlement is concerned, as is the position of Belarusian partner. "Belarus has always recognized Moldova’s territorial integrity," he stressed.
Transnistria, a largely Russian-speaking region, broke away from Moldova following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Its relations with Moldova’s central government in Chisinau have been highly mixed and extremely tense at times ever since then. In 1992 and 1993, tensions erupted into a bloody armed conflict that claimed the lives of hundreds of people on both sides.
The fratricidal war was stopped after a peace agreement was signed in Moscow in 1992 and Russian peacekeepers were brought into the conflict area. Negotiations on the conflict’s peaceful settlement known as the 5+2 format talks (involving Moldova and Transnistria as parties to the conflict, Russia, Ukraine and the European security watchdog OSCE as mediators and the United States and the European Union as observers) started after that.