3 Apr 2018 16:49

Moldova's geopolitical neutrality to help solve Transdniestria problem - Dodon

CHISINAU. April 3 (Interfax) - Moldova's geopolitical neutrality is required to solve the Transdniestria problem, Moldovan President Igor Dodon said at an international conference titled "Moldova's Demographic Problems: Causes, Consequences, and Solutions based on International Practices" on Tuesday.

"There can be no positive solution to the Transdniestria problem without the military and geopolitical neutrality of Moldova. I think that our country should not be a member of any military bloc, either NATO or any others," Dodon said.

"There should be no foreign forces in the country either," he said.

"The country can restore its territorial integrity via Transdniestria's return only if Moldova retains its neutrality and maintains good relations with Russia, in addition to the West," Dodon said.

The stalling of the Transdniestrian settlement is 'the sword of Damocles' hanging over Moldova's head, he said.

"Time is against us because the gap between banks of the Dniester is widening. The lack of a consolidated concept of solving the problem on the basis of compromise is the main impediment to the reunification of the country," Dodon said.

Moldova should develop relations with all countries "instead of being hostile towards its strategic partners," he said.

"We should not befriend some neighbors to the detriment of other neighbors or partners, which is what is happening now. This policy is not just erroneous but also anti-government, as it has affected our economy and the integrity of our state. The goal of the political class should be the Republic of Moldova, at least for the next decade, rather than a project linked to either Russia or Europe," Dodon said.

Opinion polls show that an increasing number of citizens favor this solution, "i.e. halting the policy of external integration and focusing on the policy of domestic equilibrium," he said.

"Moldova should turn from a zone of conflict into a zone of contact with various countries; a zone where economic and other interests of our neighbors and partners would intertwine," Dodon said.

The "Moldova's Demographic Problems: Causes, Consequences, and Solutions based on International Practices" forum is being hosted by Moldova's Academy of Sciences at the president's initiative.