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Moscow responsible for Russians in Transnistria, peacekeeping mandate relevant — Lavrov

"And we have a mandate that was negotiated with all sides back in the day," the top diplomat noted

MOSCOW, March 28. /TASS/. Moscow is responsible for Russian citizens in Transnistria, and the Russian peacekeeping contingent mandate remains totally relevant, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview for TASS Tuesday.

"There are about 250,000 Russian citizens living in Transnistria, I think. Of course, we are responsible for them," the Minister said. "First of all, this is our peacekeeping contingent and the group of forces protecting the huge ammunition depot in Kolbasna."

"And we have a mandate that was negotiated with all sides back in the day," Lavrov noted. "It is our conviction that this mandate remains fully relevant, and we will be guided by it."

Russian peacekeepers were deployed to the area of hostilities on July 29, 1992 under the July 21, 1992 Agreement on Principles for Peaceful Settlement of the Armed Conflict in the Dniester Region of the Republic of Moldova, signed by Presidents of Russia and Moldova in presence of the Transnistrian leader. Currently, Russian peacekeepers uphold peace in the Dniester separation zone, together with peacekeepers from Moldova, Transnistria and a group of military observers from Ukraine.

On March 9, the Ministry of State Security of Transnistria reported a prevented terror attack against a number of Transnistrian officials and the visiting OSCE delegation. The organizers of the attack planned to detonate a car bomb in downtown Tiraspol. Two suspects were detained, one of them has already testified. President of Transnistria Vadim Krasnoselsky stated that the sabotage was sanctioned and prepared by the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU).