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Transnistria ready to resume talks with Moldova without preconditions

The minister admitted that the situation in the negotiating process left much to be desired

CHISINAU, October 15. /TASS/. The unrecognized Transnistrian Republic is ready to resume talks in the 5+2 format without preliminary conditions, Transnistrian Foreign Minister Vitaly Ignatyev said on Thursday after a meeting with Head of the OSCE Mission to Moldova Claus Neukirch.

"I reiterate our plans to hold a meeting in the 5+2 format to resolve the problems linked with the Berlin Plus package. But we will not play up to Chisinau when it tries to frustrate the negotiating process by turning the dialogue into scandals, mutual accusations and street brawls. We are not going to degrade along with the Moldovan colleagues and break down the architecture of negotiations," the ministry’s press service quoted him as saying.

The minister admitted that the situation in the negotiating process left much to be desired. "We see certain efforts from the OSCE to have the dialogue continue. On our part, we are ready for cooperation with all participants in the talks, including the Moldovan side," he said.

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 peace 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.

The latest 5+2 talks in Bratislava in October 2019 that focused on trust-building measures failed to yield a final protocol and the sides agreed to continue these efforts at a conference in Bavaria in November. That meeting however brought about no progress either.

After consultations between Moldovan President Igor Dodon and Transnistrian leader Vadim Krasnoselsky in July, it was announced that the sides were ready for a new round of settlement talks.

OSCE Special Representative for the Transnistrian Settlement Process Thomas Mayr-Harting hailed the Dodon-Krasnoselsky meeting and expressed the hope that it would pave the way for further constructive dialogue and would yield concrete results in the coming months.