Igor Boțan: Way in which international assistance is received generates controversy

Expert Igor Boțan said all the political arguments about the international assistance provided to the Republic of Moldova derive from three centers of attraction – Eurasian Union in which Russian dominates, the European Union and Romania. According to him, these three centers of attraction are regarded by the people in different ways. There are political parties behind the people and these often enter into controversy and try to juggle instead of finding solutions to problems. On the one hand, the politicians say the division in society should be overcome. On the other hand, the way in which the international assistance is accepted and covered generates controversy. The expert stated his opinions in the public debatePolitical colors of international assistance in times of pandemic” that was staged by IPN News Agency.

Igor Boțan, who is the standing expert of IPN’s project, said Moldova forms part of the Commonwealth of Independent States and is simultaneously an associated state of the EU. “There is an agreement with the Russian Federation, but despite this, the Russian state imposed bans in 2006 and 2013 and the last ban hasn’t been yet lifted. A kind of treatment of the partners according to documents, strategies is witnessed. On the other hand, there is the association with the EU, which had a very clear message: it is interested in securing the European area. It is beneficial to the EU to have friends along its borders and it helps them financially, non-monetarily and technically. Instead, the EU wants to see that we share the European values,” he stated.

“There is also Romania with which the Republic of Moldova has very special relations as one third of the Moldovan citizens are Romanians. There are historical, cultural and other types of ties with it and when problems are experienced, Romania cannot remain indifferent.”

All the arguments derive from the three centers of attraction – Moscow, Brussels and Bucharest. The way in which the acceptance of assistance is covered plays an important role in this regard. “For example, when the assistance is provided by the Russian Federation, President Igor Dodon says “a friend in need is a friend indeed”. The assistance offered by Romania recently was welcomed in an entirely different way,” he stated.

Igor Boțan said the international assistance comes to support Moldova, but the politicians’ involvement transforms this aid. It seems that the authorities want to somehow polarize the aid that came from the foreign partners. And this has a polarization impact on the assistance received by Moldova. It is regrettable that an exceptional situation was harshly politicized.

The debate “Political colors of international assistance in times of pandemic” was the 133rd edition of the series of debates “Developing political culture through public debates” that are supported by the Hanns Seidel Foundation.

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