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West sizing up Moldova as ‘next Ukraine’, Lavrov cautions

The Russian top diplomat noted that Moldovan President Maia Sandu had Romanian citizenship, she was ready to unite with Romania and in general was ready for almost anything

MOSCOW, February 2. /TASS/. The West is looking at Moldova to play the role of the "next Ukraine", and the country's President Maia Sandu is "itching to join NATO" and ready to annex Moldova to Romania, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview with TV news anchor Dmitry Kiselyov on Thursday.

"Now they are sizing up Moldova for this role, primarily because they were able to place a president at the helm of the country, who is itching to join NATO, by way of quite specific methods that are far from being free or democratic in any way. She [Sandu] has Romanian citizenship, she is ready to unite with Romania and in general is ready for almost anything," Lavrov specified.

He highlighted the fact that going hand in hand with this "pro-NATO, pro-EU drive" by Sandu, the West and Chisinau refuse to resume work in the "5+1" format involving Chisinau, Tiraspol, Russia, the US, the OSCE, and the UN. According to Lavrov, this "speaks volumes."

"This format is considered unsuitable by the West, because it was needed when there were still authorities in Chisinau who were interested in maintaining [the country’s] territorial integrity and in an agreement with Transnistria. But when this administration came in, they were ready to solve the Transnistria problem by force and insist on the expulsion of our peacekeepers and those who guard the ammunition depots in Kolbasna, then no negotiation formats are needed, you just need to support these powers that be," the Russian top diplomat explained.

"This is one of the countries that the West wants to turn into another anti-Russia," he concluded.