Divergent Opinions Regarding the Number of Illegal Border Guards Posts in the Nistru River Valley Security Zone

Divergent Opinions Regarding the Number of Illegal Border Guards Posts in the Nistru River Valley Security Zone
21 July 2020 | 11:01

The Deputy Prime Minister for Reintegration stated that 22 illegal border guard posts remained in the Nistru River Valley Security Zone from the 37 posts installed since the coronavirus outbreak in Moldova. The Reintegration Policy Bureau mentioned the same information in a press release. Last week, President Igor Dodon mentioned that the self-proclaimed authorities in Tiraspol installed 31 illegal border guard posts after the COVID-19 pandemic sparked in the country. Dodon added that 16 illegal border guard posts are operational in the Nistru River Valley Security Zone. 

On July 21, the Joint Military Command announced that the self-proclaimed authorities in Tiraspol removed 15 illegal border guard posts. During the exceptional situation related to the COVID-19 infection, the self-proclaimed authorities in Tiraspol installed 37 illegal border guard posts. 

According to a press release issued by the Reintegration Policy Bureau, six illegal border guard posts around the North district of Bender, the south-east of Moldova, three illegal border guard posts from Merenești-Tiraspol, the south-east of Moldova, the illegal border guard posts from Proteagailovca, Hârbovăț, Dzerjinscoie, Pohrebea, Coşnița, and Doroțcaia, villages located in the center and south-east of Moldova were also removed. 

“Military observers will check the remaining illegal border guard posts, according to the decision issued by the Joint Control Commission on July 2. The inspection will be carried out at the request of the Chișinău delegation in the Joint Control Commission. The inspection will ascertain the illegal and abusive character of the illegal border guard posts installed by the self-proclaimed authorities in Tiraspol in the Nistru River Valley Security Zone,” the press release mentions. 

On July 20, while debating the no-confidence motion against the Government led by Prime Minister Ion Chicu in the Parliament, the Deputy Prime Minister for Reintegration, Cristina Lesnic, stated that 22 illegal border guard posts remained in the Nistru River Valley Security Zone from the 37 posts installed since the coronavirus outbreak in Moldova.  

“We, especially myself as the chief negotiator, including my team, the Joint Control Commission, do not want the situation in the Nistru River Valley Security Zone to escalate. The peaceful settlement of the Transnistrian conflict is expressly mentioned even in the ministerial conferences in the 5+2 format 5 plus 2,” said Lesnic.

The data presented by the Reintegration Policy Bureau differ from the data offered by Dodon after a conversation he had on July 13 with the self-proclaimed leader of Tiraspol, Vadim Krasnoselski. 

Back then, Dodon mentioned that the self-proclaimed authorities in Tiraspol installed  31 illegal border guard structures in the security zone since the beginning of the pandemic. He also mentioned that 16 illegal border guard structures remain opened.

However, the Reintegration Policy Bureau claimed that “under the pretext of epidemiological measures, the self-proclaimed authorities in Tiraspol have installed 37 illegal border guard posts without the consent of the Joint Control Commission. These illegal border guard posts prevent the free movement of people between the two banks of the Nistru River but also access to basic services to about 50,000 people living in the Nistru River Valley Security Zone. 

These illegal border guard posts are challenging the Agreement of July 21, 1992, on the principles for a peaceful settlement of the armed conflict in the Nistru River region of Moldova. These illegal border guard posts are also challenging the Odessa Agreement signed on March 20, 1998, on confidence measures and development of contacts between Moldova and the breakaway Transnistria region. The two agreements condemned the presence of illegal border guard posts in the Nistru River Valley Security Zone and mentioned about their gradual withdrawal. 

The authorities in Chișinău notified the mediators and observers in the process of resolving the Transnistrian conflict, but also the international community in connection with the violations committed by the Transnistrian side,” the Reintegration Policy Bureau wrote in the press release. 

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