Transdniestrian leader denies reports alleging Ukrainian forces' offensive
CHISINAU. March 2 (Interfax) - Vadim Krasnoselski, the leader of Transdniestria, has denied reports alleging that Ukrainian forces have invaded the region.
"Amid the situation in the neighboring Ukraine, citizens of the [self-proclaimed] Transdniestrian Moldovan Republic have started receiving telephone calls from unidentified numbers, with callers saying that troops of the Ukrainian Armed Forces have crossed the TMR border. The unidentified callers introduce themselves as officials from the TMR presidential office, recommend that citizens take the essential documents, and gather on the central square of Tiraspol, from where a mass evacuation of the city residents would supposedly be arranged. Such statements and actions are false, have no grounds, and are banal provocations," Krasnoselski's office quoted him as saying on its website.
"The situation in the republic currently remains stable and controllable," he said.
"I would stress once again: no aggressive actions against our neighbors have ever been planned or are being planned on the part of Transdniestria," he said.
"Transdniestria remains open and is providing assistance and support to Ukrainian citizens in need of help, who have had to leave their homeland due to the tragic circumstances. I am urging everyone to remain calm and take note of and react only to information from official sources," Krasnoselski said.
Ukraine has closed all checkpoints on the 422-kilometer long Transdniestrian sector of the 1,222-kilometer long Ukrainian-Moldovan border since February 28.
In view of the situation in Ukraine, the Moldovan parliament declared a state of emergency for 60 days starting February 24. In the first five days of the conflict, nearly 100,000 refugees from Ukraine entered Moldova, and most of them have travelled further to European Union countries, while some 50,000 refugees have been accommodated in Moldova.