Moldova. The year was marked by a bitter political
conflict between the country's new Prorussian President Igor
Dodon and the EU-friendly coalition government.
Dodon met President Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin in
January, saying he wants to restore trade with Moscow and
hopes to tear up the cooperation agreement with the EU. On a
visit to Brussels, Dodon warned that approaching NATO was
threatening Moldova's security. He wanted to prevent NATO
from opening a liaison office in the capital, Chișinău,
while the government hastened the opening. Dodon described
it as a provocation.
Countryaah.com, President Dodon rejected three new ambassadors proposed
by the government, including London. The government
responded by calling home the Moldovan ambassador from
Moscow and state officials were warned to go there.
The European Commission decided on up to EUR 100 million
in aid and loans to Moldova, the EU's poorest country.
According to the Commission, Moldova is plagued by
corruption and mismanagement that has weakened the economy
and slowed growth.
The European Parliament occasionally provided assistance
to Moldova due to corruption and political uncertainty. The
government reiterated its promises to reform the judiciary
and increase the fight against corruption.
In March, the Minister of Agriculture was dismissed on
suspicion of corruption, and in April the Minister of
Transport was also arrested on charges of corruption.
Moldova was highlighted in an international tangle of
money laundering, where over $ 20 billion was illegally
brought from the Russian Federation via Latvia to shell
companies in a number of countries. Moldovan bank officials
and lawyers were investigated for participation.
Liberal party ministers left the government in protest
against the party's vice-chairman and mayor of Chișinău
being arrested and placed under house arrest suspected of
corruption. According to the party leadership, the arrest
was politically motivated without sufficient evidence.
President Dodon called for a referendum on his
controversial proposal that the presidential office should
be given power to dissolve parliament and announce new
elections. However, the vote was stopped by the
Seventeen people were arrested in Moldova and Ukraine on
suspicion of planning to murder Vladimir Plahotniuc, leader
of the Democratic Party government. Weapons, including
grenade launchers, had been seized, according to
In July, Parliament voted for a contentious change to the
electoral system, with half of the members being elected in
one-person constituencies and half on party lists. The
opposition left the House in protest. The president signed
the law, which was met by popular protests in the fall.
Russia's Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin had to turn
around when he was to visit Transnistria in July with
President Dodon. EU sanctions against Moscow hindered
Rogozin's plan to fly to Moldova.
In July, the majority in Parliament adopted a statement
that the Russian military should be withdrawn from the
transnistrian outbreak region. Socialists and Communists
left the plenary in protest.
In September, President Dodon vetoed the government's
plan to allow Moldovan troops to participate in a NATO
exercise in Ukraine. The government ran over the president
and sent 57 soldiers to the US-led maneuver in Ukraine. When
Parliament was called in to vote down several of the
president's vetoes, Dodon accused parliament and government
of trying to limit his power as commander-in-chief.
When snow chaos erupted in the Moldavian capital in
April, Swedish Västtrafik's travel service, which has its
ordering center located in Chișinău, was hit. The employees
there could not get to work, and electricity, telephone and
internet were knocked out. West traffic solved the temporary
crisis by redirecting the talks to Skövde and Senegal.