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Moldovan president hopes for Italy’s support in Transnistrian settlement

November 06, 2017, 20:33 UTC+3 CHISINAU

The fratricidal war was stopped in this area after a peace agreement was signed in Moscow in 1992

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© Mikhail Metsel/TASS

CHISINAU, November 6. /TASS/. Moldovan President Igor Dodon said on Monday he hopes talks on the Transnistrian settlement in the 5+2 format will be given a fresh impetus as soon as presidency in the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) passes over to Italy.

"We will support the Italian presidency’s efforts, in particular towards the settlement of long-standing conflicts. We hope Italy will remain among Moldova’s key partners in the sphere of the settlement of the Transnistrian issue. We believe that the OSCE must remain a major peace and security guarantor in Europe. We express hope that new rounds of talks in the 5+2 format will be organized under the Italian presidency in 2018," Dodon wrote on his Facebook account after talks with Italian President Sergio Mattarella in Rome.

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.

As was initially agreed, meetings in this format are to be convened at least six times a year. The latest such meeting was held in June 2016 in Berlin, after a two-year break, and yielded a protocol where the sides agreed to settle the problem of mutual recognition of documents and establish cooperation in the sphere of telecommunications. Apart from that, they undertook to abandon criminal prosecution of official and refrain from unilateral actions. However these agreements have not been fully implemented.

In the meantime, relations between Chisinau and Tiraspol are only getting more strained. In this background, Moscow called to waste no time to convene a meeting in the 5+2 format. The initiative was supported by Tiraspol. Chisinau too agreed to the idea but the OSCE insisted that before such a meeting the parties to the conflict should reach preliminary agreements on some problem issues. It is expected that at least one extended-format meeting will be held this year under Austria’s presidency in the OSCE. Such a meeting is scheduled for late November.

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