Presidential elections in Moldova

Reuters of the Word at work again. It withhold important details.
Додон осудил действия молдавских властей в отношении российских дипломатов
Moldoval president Dodon condemned the action of Moldovan government that is merely Washington's puppet. The extradiction itself means nothing and after the next parliamentary elections there will be new government.
Current one acts according to orders from Washington - big deal.
:) you've had a rhetoric injection again. 'Washington puppets' freely elected as is 'Putin's puppet'

We'll see in the elections but as usual it's another example of Putin 'winning friends and influencing people'

Yours, 'a lapdog poodle, capitalist running dog puppet' :rolleyes:
Exclusive: Russian diplomats expelled from Moldova recruited fighters - sources
It's Reuters (who can't independently verify the allegations) and will undoubtedly be denounced by (one or more of) the propagandists but it would appear the reason for the expulsion would be that they were recruiting for E Ukraine:
Moldovan intelligence believes five Russian diplomats expelled from Moldova last month were spies who were recruiting fighters for the Moscow-backed insurgency in neighboring Ukraine, a government source and two diplomatic sources told Reuters.

Moldova, a former Soviet state that has long been the focus of a struggle for influence between Russia and the West, expelled the diplomats on May 29. It did not explain the decision, with Prime Minister Pavel Filip saying only that his government had "good reasons".

According to the sources, who are familiar with the case, the five were ejected because of their alleged activities as undercover officers with the Russian military intelligence agency, the GRU.

They said Moldovan officials believed the Russians were recruiting fighters from Gagauzia, an autonomous southern region home to an ethnic Turkish population that is pro-Russian and opposes closer integration with the European Union.

The Moldovan government source and Chisinau-based diplomatic sources all spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter. They did not say how the Russians allegedly recruited the fighters, how many were recruited or the reason for their recruitment.
No independent verification:
Reuters could not independently verify the allegations about the activities of the five Russians.
Russian Dep Foreign Minister says it's "idle gossip":

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin described the allegations as "idle gossip", saying they were not supported by facts.

"Someone is deliberately trying to whip up a wave of propaganda," Karasin was quoted as saying by the RIA news agency. "The people (diplomats) carried out their stated official duties to the letter."

The Russian defense ministry did not respond to requests for comment.

Asked by Reuters if the five Russians were GRU officers, a spokeswoman for the Moldovan foreign ministry said they were diplomats and declined to comment further.
Allegedly sent to a trg camp near Rostov:

Moldovan intelligence believes fighters recruited from Gagauzia were first sent to a paramilitary training camp in the Rostov region of southern Russia, according to the sources.

The sources did not identify the camp. Russia has used at least two military camps in Rostov to train volunteers for fighting in eastern Ukraine, according to evidence collected by Reuters and the Russian media.

A former member of a Russian army artillery unit told Reuters that he saw about 200 people in camouflage fatigues - not Russian military uniforms - based in a camp near a Russian army position at the Kuzminsky firing range in Rostov in 2014, at the time of fierce battles in eastern Ukraine.

This was corroborated by a member of a unit of the Cossacks - a Russian paramilitary group - who told Reuters in early 2015 that volunteers to fight in Ukraine were training alongside the Russian army in that area.

According to Russian media outlet, fighters bound for eastern Ukraine were also training at the Kadamovsky firing range in Rostov.
Not confirmed by Ukraine SBU at this time but they are believed to have provided the original info:
The three sources said some information about Gagauzians fighting in eastern Ukraine was brought to the attention of Moldovan authorities by Ukraine's state security service, the SBU, which gathers intelligence on people fighting with the separatist insurgency in eastern Ukraine.

With information from the SBU, the Moldovan authorities were able to track, arrest and interrogate Gagauzian fighters returning from the conflict, according to the sources. Some became informers, they added.

In response to a series of questions from Reuters, including whether it passed intelligence to Moldova about fighters in east Ukraine or knew why the Russian diplomats were expelled, the SBU said: "The Security Service of Ukraine does not have the information you requested."

Relations between Moldova and Russia have been bumpy under a succession of pro-Western governments. Russia halted imports of Moldovan produce in retaliation for Chisinau signing a trade and political deal with the European Union in 2014. Moldova and Russia have also feuded over the treatment of Moldovan officials traveling to Russia.
Apparently they are from a region called Gagauzia:
But Russia has forged direct ties to Gagauzia.

Irina Vlah, elected the head of Gagauzia in March 2015 on pledges of closer ties with Russia, visited the Kremlin in January this year and attended a reception hosted by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

"The people of Gagauzia view Russia with affection," Vlah said at the reception.
Wiki on Gagauzia: Gagauzia - Wikipedia
Moldova passes divisive election law amid street protests
The two largest parties (pro West [Parliament] Democratic Party, pro Russia [President] Socialist part) have agreed to change the electoral system to a 'first past the post' one:
Prime Minister Pavel Filip pushed to replace the proportional electoral system with a mixed scheme which will let voters cast their ballot for constituency candidates as well as party lists.

Opponents said bringing in first-past-the-post voting will squeeze out smaller parties in the ex-Soviet country, and benefit the two main political players - the ruling pro-Western Democratic Party and the opposition pro-Moscow Socialists.

Both dominant parties have backed the changes in Europe's poorest country, where the European Union and Russia compete for influence.

The Venice Commission, a body which rules on rights and democracy disputes in Europe, has also raised concerns, saying individual constituency MPs could come under pressure from business interests.

Some protesters shouted "down with the mafia", as the measures passed with 74 votes in the 101-seat parliament.

Andrei Nastase, leader of the opposition Dignity and Truth Platform Party, accused the Democratic Party of colluding with the Socialists in a "cartel" to squeeze out other groups.

Parliament Speaker Andrian Candu said the law would pave the way for a new political class "which will allow people to put new and worthy people in parliament in 2018".

Moldova has seen three governments fall since 2015, after the disappearance of $1 billion from the banking system plunged the country into political and economic chaos.

Moldova goes to the polls next year, where the Democratic Party's coalition expects a tough contest with Socialists, whose leader was elected president in November.
Moldova sends troops to NATO drills despite presidential veto
Despite the President saying no, the Moldovan's have still sent troops to a NATO Exercise:
The government’s plans to send troops were vetoed by President Igor Dodon, who argued that Moldova is bound by its constitution to stay neutral. The defence ministry ignored the president, who is also Moldova’s commander-in-chief.

“Officially I confirm that, despite all the obstacles, 57 servicemen of Moldova, as was planned earlier, just an hour ago went by bus to participate in NATO military exercises, which start on Friday in Ukraine,” Defence Ministry spokeswoman Diana Gradinaru said.
More than 10,000 people rally to unify Romania and Moldova
Parliamentary elections later this year. Will the President’s party gain more seats? Or will it remain in the President still wanting to join the Russian trade deals and following Vlad’s lead with no support from Parliament?

Meanwhile marches in support of Moldova rejoining Rumania. Basescu, former President of Rumania joining marchers:
“We call upon the deputies of the Moldovan and Romanian parliament to vote in the near future for unification,” Basescu said at the demonstration, which was timed to coincide with the 100th anniversary of Moldova joining Greater Romania.
Dordon, President of Moldova (the part not under Russian ‘protection’ in Transnistria) asks that counter marches don’t take place:
Dodon asked those who oppose reunification not to stage a rival rally on Sunday.

“I urge all patriots and statesmen not to march against the unionists on March 25. We should not give them an additional reason for demonstrations or provocations,” Dodon said.

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