13:34 GMT +321 September 2017
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    Soldier takes part in exercises with the Operational group of Russian Forces in the Transnistrian region of Moldova.

    Russian Departure From Transnistria May Trigger Moldovan Incursion

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    A pullout of Russian peacekeepers from Moldova’s breakaway Transnistria region could trigger an incursion by Moldovan forces, the regional president said in an interview out Thursday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The Moldova Constitutional Court has ruled the Russian presence in the ethnic Russian and Ukrainian dominated region as illegal. In a letter published Tuesday, the former Soviet republic asked the UN General Assembly to discuss a complete withdrawal of foreign armed forces from Transnistria at its regular session in September.

    "Peacekeeping forces, primarily Russian ones, guarantee peace in our territory. Without peacekeepers there will be war. The Moldovan Constitutional Court considers this land to be occupied, meaning that force can be used… Those who want peacekeepers out want a war," Vadim Krasnoskelsky told Russia’s Izvestiya newspaper.

    Russian troops have been part of a multinational peacekeeping force in Transnistria since 1992. The region declared its independence from the then Soviet Republic of Moldova in 1990 for fear of Moldova’s possible reunion with Romania.

    Reacting to Moldova’s demand of the Russian pullout, Russia’s ambassador to the UN Vasily Nebenzya said Wednesday it was an unfriendly move that reflected divisions between the president and the rest of the executive power in Chisinau.

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    Tags:
    Transnistria, Russia, Moldova
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