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Transdniestria favors direct relations with Russia

President of Trandsdniestria Yengeny Shevchkuk says there will be many disadvantages from Moldova's Association Agreement with the European Union
President of Moldova’s breakaway republic of Transdniestria Yevgeny Shevchuk  ITAR-TASS/Sergei Karpov
President of Moldova’s breakaway republic of Transdniestria Yevgeny Shevchuk
© ITAR-TASS/Sergei Karpov

MOSCOW, July 03. /ITAR-TASS/. Direct contacts with Russia will minimize the impact of Moldova’s ties with the EU, the president of Moldova’s breakaway republic of Transdniestria Yevgeny Shevchuk said.

“There will be more disadvantages from the Association Agreement,” Shevchuk told a news briefing on Thursday. “We told Chisinau about it several times. But there was no reaction to our proposal to coordinate positions before the signing,” Shevchuk said. Transdniestria seeks to maintain direct contacts with Russia, he said.

During the visit to Moscow, the Transdniestrian delegation signed a package of inter-departmental agreements and memorandums. “They are aimed at developing economic relations and cooperation between the two countries,” he said.

At present, the Association Agreement creates risks for Transdniestria’s economy. In particular, it is related to unemployment, Shevchuk said.

Moldova signed the EU Association Agreement in Brussels on June 27. On Wednesday, July 2, Moldova’s parliament ratified the Association Agreement with the European Union.

Deputies of the ruling Pro-European Coalition and independent parliamentarians have voted for the document. “Irrespective of our political views, we have one purpose — to make Moldova a prosperous country in order to fight corruption and modernize the economy and infrastructure,” Moldova’s President Nicolae Timofti said. He expressed hope that disagreements on this issue would be settled soon.

Moldova’s next step is to join the EU, he said. The European Commission lauded the ratification of the Moldova-EU Association Agreement.

This will make it possible to launch a preliminary mechanism of the validity of the agreement in the autumn without waiting for the parliaments of 28 EU countries to ratify it, European Commission spokesman Jonathan Todd said.

Moldova signed the agreement with the EU when the society was divided. Protest actions were held in Chisinau and other cities. Protesters demanded a nationwide referendum on the issue.

The referendums in Transdniestria and the Gagauz autonomy proved that over 90% of residents backed rapprochement with Russia and incorporation in the Customs Union.