Ex-Minister of Security Services: Transnistria is a shameful act of Russia
Moldova did everything possible to avoid the violent conflict in Transnistria in 1992, but Russia did not want that. The statement was made by Tudor Botnaru, ex-chief of KGB in the former Soviet Republic of Moldova in 1990-1991 and in 1997-1999, in an exclusive interview in Romanian with Moldova.ORG.
According to Mr. Botnaru, several mistakes have been made after Moldova gained its independence in August 1991, while the Soviet leadership in Moscow did everything possible to keep its control over the former Soviet republics, including creating separatist regions as it is Transnistria in Moldova.
“The economy was collapsing. We lost our assets; we couldn’t gain back what belonged to us after the dissolution of the Soviet Union,” said Tudor Botnaru, who was also the Moldovan Ambassador to Belgium in 1994-1997.
Moldova became an UN member state in 1992 and Russia claims it respects the independence and the territorial integrity of the Republic of Moldova, but Russia continues to keep its troops in Transnistria without the consent of the Moldovan authorities.
“It is a wrongful and shameful act of Russia. When Russia is accused by [international community] that keeping its army in [the Republic of Moldova's] Transnistrian region is an occupation [of Moldova], it should not get upset with us, because this is a fact,” Tudor Botnaru stated.
The former Minister of Security Services believes that Ukraine should get more actively involved in the conflict settlement in Transnistria.
“Ukrainians should understand that the deployment of the Russian troops is like a spike not just for us, but for them, as well,” Moldova’s ex-Intelligence Minister said.
Transnistria is an internationally unrecognized entity proclaimed in Tiraspol on September 2, 1990, initially styled the Moldavian Transnistrian Soviet Socialist Republic. Currently known as the Moldavian Transnistrian Republic, this breakaway entity consists of a narrow strip of land (180 km by 32 km) nestled between the east bank of the Nistru River and the border of Moldova with Ukraine, on a small part of what used to be, between 1924 and 1940, the Moldavian Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic.
In 1992 escalated a conflict between Moldova and Russia over this territory. A cease-fire was signed the same year by president of Russia Boris Yeltsin and president of Moldova Mircea Snegur. An agreement to withdraw all Russian forces from the trans-Nistrian districts of the Republic of Moldova was signed by Moldovan Prime Minister Andrei Sangheli and Russian Prime Minister Victor Chernomyrdin in 1994. It stipulated that the 14th Army was to leave the Republic of Moldova within three years, but the agreement was never ratified by the Duma, Russia’s legislature.