Moldova’s policy towards the crisis on the Russian-Ukrainian border can be formulated this way: “Let’s do our best not to irritate Russia”. “There are reasons in favor of such a policy,” political commentator Anatol Țăranu, Doctor of History, ex-ambassador of the Republic of Moldova to the Russian Federation, stated in IPN’s public debate “Ukraine as an end goal or as a starting point? Place reserved for Moldova”.
“The problem is any conflict ends with particular understandings. Time will come when everyone will sit at the negotiating table to solve this big conflict and it is absolutely evident that particular divisions will be agreed in case a solution is reached. The divisions necessitate compromises. A political agreement is not possible without compromises,” explained Anatol Țăranu.
“What we should see now is what side of the compromises or of the divisions will be taken by Moldova. Both the West and the Russian Federation need to make compromises. Ukraine is now the main element of the equation for the West and the big games and agreements will be around Ukraine,” he stated, noting Moldova’s position is now very ambiguous even if the position was earlier in favor of Ukraine – Crimea is Ukrainian territory.
Anatol Țăranu said Moldova is not so vocal in the current Russian-Ukrainian crisis because of several reasons. “The gas issue will not be solved somehow. Russia showed how is resolves the gas problem. As to gastarbeiters, the moment when the Republic of Moldova should be maximally pressed hasn’t been year reached,” said the commentator, noting Ukraine is now Russia’s main goal, but Moldova’s time will also come.
“Our position is indeed weak. We do not have resources. As we also do not have a trenchant position, our fundamental interests can be simply neglected and we will become part of a compromise when the big divisions are made. This is the main danger,” stated Anatol Țăranu, noting there are bad and less bad solutions for Moldova and it will have to choose between them.
According to the expert, Moldova can propose extending the peacekeeping operation on its territory by including other international players, given that the regime in the security zone and the agreement of 1992 are permanently violated now that this area is mainly controlled by Russian peacekeepers and paramilitary forces. Such an initiative will most probably not be successful, but it will be at least discussed at the future negotiations if these are held.
The public debate titled “Ukraine as an end goal or as a starting point? Place reserved for Moldova” is the 223rd installment of the project “Developing Political Culture through Public Debates”. The project is implemented by IPN with support from the Hanns Seidel Foundation.