Russia reacted with threats of resumption of hostilities between Tiraspol and Chisinau.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Moldova announced the ban on the entry into the country from the territory of Pridnestrovie of Russian military personnel of the so-called operational group of Russian troops (OGRF), which is based in the self-proclaimed “republic”, reports “European Truth” with reference to the speaker of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Daniel Voda.
How did Moldova explain its decision?
According to Voda, the OGRF is an illegal formation on the territory of Moldova, which violates the status of neutrality. As for the rotation of Russians who are part of the Russian peacekeeping contingent, it “is carried out according to a mechanism created to avoid risks and ensure coordinated movement of the contingent's personnel.”
Given the illegal stay of Russians on the territory of Transnistria, the Foreign Ministry speaker again reminded that Russian troops and ammunition depots must be withdrawn from Moldova.
Russia hinted at the resumption of the war
“Russian officers who were sent to Pridnestrovie to staff the Russian contingent on a rotational basis were detained many times at the Chisinau airport without explanation of reasons … We regard such actions as unfriendly and always properly respond to them,” said Alexei Alexei, director of the Second Department of the CIS countries of the Russian Foreign Ministry Polischuk.
The Russian diplomat called the soldiers in Pridnestrovie peacekeepers and suggested that Chisinau refrain from an economic blockade of the region, as this could lead to war.
Where is Pridnestrovie located?
The self-proclaimed “Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic” is located between Moldova and Ukraine mainly on the left bank of the Dniester. On the right bank, the “PMR” controls the city of Bendery.
“PMR” declared independence from Moldova on September 2, 1990, Chisinau did not recognize its independence, which eventually led to a large-scale armed conflict in 1992, the hot phase of which ended after the intervention of the Russian army, which supported the separatists.
What is the Russian grouping in Transnistria?
Russia created the OGRF in Transnistria from the remnants of the former 14th Russian army, which was deployed in Moldova in the early 1990s. She actively participated in the Transnistrian conflict. The group includes two motorized rifle battalions and a control unit with a total strength of up to 1,700 military personnel, most of whom are local residents who have received Russian citizenship.
Until 2014, the rotation was carried out through the territory of Ukraine, but since 2014, after the start of the Russian aggression against Ukrainians, the Russians have lost this opportunity.
As reported, Foreign Minister of the unrecognized “PMR” Vitaly Ignatiev said that Pridnestrovie wants to achieve independence and become part of Russia in the future.