Transnistrian intelligence advocating Russian elections

The National Council under the Ministry of State Security in Tiraspol (MGB in Russian) appealed to the Transnistrian residents with Russian citizenship to actively participate in the March 2 presidential elections, not to remain outside the political life of the Russian society and to come to exercise their right to vote at the polling stations, Info-Prim Neo’s correspondent in Transnistria reports. At the last meeting of the Council, they stressed the state local media did not adequately cover this extremely important event, Russia playing the major role in informing the population about the coming elections. Local experts explain the indolence of the unrecognised official bodies in the race by a new possible deterioration of the relations between Moscow and Tiraspol after Transnistrian leader Igor Smirnov had not been invited to consultations over Kosovo’s declaration of independence by the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, whereas the leaders of Abkhazia and South Ossetia attended the meeting. The some Russian media write: “Moscow left Transnistria orphan. While waiting for a Kosovo precedent, Moscow divided the protected unrecognised republics from the CIS into ‘natural’ and ‘step’ daughters.” According to Transnistria’s deputy minister of state security Valery Iunevich, about 110,000 Russian citizens live in the Transnistrian region. The last census showed Transnistria had a population of 530,000 people. Independent experts put the number of residents at 400,000 or even lower because the largest part of the population able to work left for abroad to work, including illegally. The National Council under the MGB was constituted last February and is headed by Vladimir Antiufeev, who is internationally wanted. The Council was formed to analyse and forecast the developments in Transnistria with the aim of ensuring the security of the Transnistrian republic. The rationality of the Council’s existence was questioned by members of the party “Obnovlenie” led by the speaker of the local legislature Yevgeny Shevchuk. In this connection, MP V. Chervonosski said that they did not need a security council that would be a consultative body subordinated to the President, but they had to reform the entire system of the power. MP L. Rybak said that according to the public opinion, the Council would be composed of the same people that had counselled Smirnov until present and had generated the present effects. MP G. Diachenko said: “The new body is set up in a difficult period for Transnistria, when the people are not socially protected... The main threat to the republic is the non-functional economy, therefore we should not create but liquidate certain institutions.” Russia announced it will open 21 polling stations in Transnistria for its March 3 presidential elections.

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