Moldovan deputy PM dismisses reports on preparations for military operation against Transdniestria
CHISINAU. March 3 (Interfax) - Moldovan Deputy Prime Minister for Reintegration Oleg Serebrian has dismissed reports on preparations for a military operation against the unrecognized Transdniestrian Moldovan Republic as "false".
"The Moldovan authorities have repeatedly declared their commitment to exclusively peaceful means for settling the Transdniestrian conflict. This is the government's firm and principled position," Serebrian said in an interview with the Vocea Basarabiei TV channel.
"It's precisely what our efforts are focused on. We're holding negotiations with the Transdniestrian administration, which has also declared its desire to conduct negotiations," Serebrian said.
In commenting on remarks by a spokesperson for the Ukrainian Border Service that Ukrainian troops were building fortifications along the Transdniestrian section of the Ukrainian-Moldovan border, Serebrian said that was "Ukraine's sovereign right."
"After February 24 , Ukraine has closed that border section," he said.
"This absolutely doesn't mean that Ukraine is preparing military actions or that there's an agreement between the Moldovan and Ukrainian leaderships on starting a military operation in the Transdniestrian region. That's absurd," Serebrian said.
Moldovan authorities are closely monitoring the development of the situation and getting in touch with the Transdniestrian administration when necessary, and they will not allow any destabilization, he said.
The Moldovan Defense Ministry has also denied reports on preparations for a military operation in Transdniestria in an earlier statement. "The false information that's being disseminated is aimed at sowing panic and confusion among the residents of both banks of the Dniester River," the ministry said.