IDIS "Viitorul" launched Thursday, July 5, the study "Why the federalization is not valid for Moldova?"
The study examines the Transnistrian conflict settlement process and consists of five analyses written by experts from several istitutions: Cornel Ciurea, Leonid Litra, Eduard Tugui (IDIS „Viitorul”), Radu Vrabie (Foreign Policy Association) and Raluca Raducanu (Romania). Authors analyze several aspects of the subject, including: the idea of federalization of Moldova; solutions for the Transnistrian conflict; the problem seen from the perspective of the U.S. and the EU; play interests of external actors involved in the 5 +2 format; change of the format of the peacekeeping mission and other important issues.
According to the political expert IDIS "Viitorul”, Cornel Ciurea, the idea of federalization of Moldova is again promoted by the political class and the civil society, the process being held without spectacular campaigns and it rather has an, exploratory nature. For now, the idea of federalization of Moldova is promoted in a indirect manner by media, some politicians from the opposition and, by some political commentators.
"In these conditions of extreme uncertainty, when the Tiraspol regime remains a great unknown, and the situation in the region continues to be unclear, the best solution for the negotiation process would be to apply a set of conservation policies of the situation, combined with a more decisive European route and, encouraging Transnistrian authorities to collaborate on segments where exists mutual interest. The solution of federalization involves a high risk for Moldova in the situation of the lack of international guarantees for Moldova and the possibility of destabilizing the internal situation through the activation of separatist activities of regional elites", said Cornel Ciurea.
Authors have outlined the differences between the Communist Party of Moldova (CPM) and the European Integration Alliance (EIA) in addressing the Transnistrian problem. According to the expert Leonid Litra, it can be observed that the strategy of the Communist Party was a blocking one, but a one that doesn’t allow the approach between Moldova and Transnistria. On the other hand, the EIA has a much more flexible position in negotiations, but it carries risks that can bring positive results and also damages for the the country's reunification process.
The trust, sometimes exaggerated, in the the European partners is one of the moments to be monitored to prevent an European Kozak and, to ensure that the agreements don’t exceed the red lines of Chisinau. At the same time, it is recommended to provide a more flexible mandate to the chief negotiator and a greater confidence in this figure, appointing that Eugene Carpov is a diplomat who has the skills to investigate the Transnistrian file. However, the lack of communication with the public, but also with the community of experts on the Transnistrian problem should be removed immediately, by creating a media center in the Reintegration Office that would ensure transparency, but also to raise the awareness of citizens regarding rthe egulatory process”, considers Leonid Litra.
Taking into account the special attitude that has Moscow to Tiraspol, Moldovan authorities should cooperate more with those in Brussels, believes Radu Vrabie, expert of the Foreign Policy Association (FPA). In this way, the author considers it appropriate that the EU to pay special attention to the conflict settlement in the EU dialogue with other partners in the 5 +2 format - Russia, Ukraine, United States - respecting the territorial integrity and the sovereignty of Moldova.
"The EU could play an essential role in the transformation of existing peacekeeping mission in one of the international civilian observers. The current mission is no longer effective, and the Russian military presence in Moldova is an intimidation factor, than a consolidation one. Frequent security incidents from the Security Zone are good examples of this”, said Radu Vrabie.
Actively involved in negotiating the conflict of the early 2000s, the Transnistrian issue has gained substance in the European discussions with the last wave of enlargement, when Moldova became a European Union state border," said Raluca Raducanu.
For the European Union, continues the author, the existence of a unrecognized separatist regime which avoids any national and international regulations and standards, at some few hundred kilometers of its eastern border, provides a range of problems not only in terms of security and regional stability, but also economically. Chisinau authorities' failure to control the whole territory of the border, made the Transnistrian region to become a shelter for regional and international organized crime, fact which directly affects EU countries such as Romania or Bulgaria.
In the chapter presented by Eduard Tugui, it shown that the whole Transnistrian settlement process is not a public one, documents being kept secret. "Not only the protocol that establishes the exact boundaries of the area is not public, are secret and all other documents adopted in the Joint Control Commission (JCC) that settle: the entire legal framework of the Joint Peacekeeping Forces (JPKF), including instruction for Heads of post, that which settles rules regarding the use of firearms by peacekeepers; control zones and placement of posts:, the exact role of military observers; the relationship between the JCC and the JPKF with local authorities, etc.", said the IDIS “Viitorul” expert, Eduard Tugui.
Furthermore, the expert said that there are not made public verbal processes of the JCC meeting, including weekly reports on the situation in the Security Zone. Therefore, Moldovan citizens have no way to know objectively the current situation in this jurisdiction, they don’t know exactly how to behave within the area, how to move over these posts peacekeepers or in which cases peacekeepers have the right to pull them, while local authorities have a transparent relationship with the JPKF and JCC. Regular press releases that come from the office of the JCC are too poor, and the discussions on creating an official website of JCC, more generous with information, didn’t let yet to a positive result.
The study is part of the project IDIS Early Warning Report, produced with the financial support from the National Endowment for Democracy.
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