The draft protocol developed after the meeting in the 5 + 2 negotiation format for the Transdniestrian settlement, which was held in Bratislava on October 9 and 10, was not signed because of four priorities announced by Chisinau, to which Tiraspol did not assent to. Following a compromise formula, proposed by the OSCE representative for Transdniestrian settlement, Franco Frattini, the protocol could be signed prior to the OSCE Ministerial Council meeting. This was announced by the Deputy Prime Minister for reintegration, Alexandru Flenchea, at a press conference, IPN reports.
The 26th meeting of the OSCE Ministerial Council will be held in Bratislava next week, December 5 - 6. "Traditionally, within the ministerial councils, a series of thematic and regional statements are discussed and proposed for approval, including a statement regarding the process of negotiations on the Transdniestrian issue," noted the Deputy Prime Minister.
As to the signing of the protocol drawn up after the 5 + 2 format round, Alexandru Flenchea mentioned that it was largely agreed on, except for one article. "I kept working every day after that round and kept silent in public about this subject, because then, at the end of the round and later, at the end of the two days of discussions on the draft protocol at the conference in Bavaria, in early November, there was an understanding at the level of negotiators, mediators and observers that all sides would continue to work and would refrain from public statements so as not to affect the process”, stated Alexandru Flenchea.
The four priorities stated by Chisinau concern the freedom of movement in the security area, human rights, ensuring the functioning of schools teaching in Romanian in the region and the fourth one, which results from the objective of facilitating the trade between the two banks and preventing smuggling – the unification of fiscal standards and customs tariffs. "I will not go into details about Tiraspol's demands. I will just say that, for the most part, those topics that are insisted on, pertain exclusively to corporate interests of a narrow group of people, which is unacceptable when debating a political document,” explained Alexandru Flenchea.
The compromise formula, with which Franco Frattini came up last day, was accepted by Chisinau. According to the deputy prime minister, it "offers both sides the opportunity to have room for maneuver in order to agree in the near future, in three to four months, on a new list of social, economic and humanitarian priorities".