War in neighbouring Ukraine has created new challenges and complicated old ones for Moldova. Not least among them is the future of Transnistria, a breakaway region that, with Russian support, has been de facto independent since 1992 and hosts a Russian military presence. But Moldova, which received candidate status in the EU in June 2022, must also define its role in Europe and European security. Crisis Group monitors developments related to the Transnistrian conflict, Russia’s attempts to influence Moldovan politics and the Russia-Ukraine war’s repercussions for the country’s stability. In its advocacy, Crisis Group recommendations emphasise ways forward on Transnistria, mitigating the dangers of the war in Ukraine and Moldova’s role in the evolving European security order. 

CrisisWatch Moldova

Unchanged Situation

Parliament voted to hold EU membership referendum alongside presidential elections in Oct, while govt deepened defence cooperation with EU.

Parliament 16 May voted to hold EU membership referendum on 20 Oct 2024, same day as presidential elections in which Maia Sandu is seeking re-election. Meanwhile, Chișinău 21 May signed security and defence partnership with EU, first country to sign such a pact with bloc, according to High Representative Josep Borrell. EU gave few details about agreement, but according to media outlet Financial Times, it will see Moldova step up intelligence sharing, conduct joint military drills and “be included in the bloc’s joint weapons procurement”. U.S. Sec-State Antony Blinken 29 May announced $135mn in aid to Moldova to bolster energy security and combat Russian disinformation.

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