Moldova seeks to end Russian military presence in Transnistria

  • Mihai Turcanu
  • 24.10.2017 17:14

On 21 and 22 October, Russian troops stationed in Transnistria carried out a military unit rotation. These manoeuvres are the latest in a series of increasingly frequent military exercises which the Russian army is staging in the breakaway region of Moldova as the pro-European government in Chisinau is seeking to obtain a UN General Assembly resolution against the illegal presence of foreign troops on its territory.

The drills were held by the Operative Group of Russian Troops (OGRT) comprising about 1,200 servicemen and formed on the remains of the 14th Soviet Army which took the separatists' side in the 1992 War in Transnistria. In May 2017, Moldova’s Constitutional Court ruled that these troops are an “occupational force”. Recently, the number of military exercises held by Russians on Moldovan territory has increased due to Moldova’s request on 23 August to include the issue of withdrawal of Russian troops from Transnistria in the 72nd UN General Assembly agenda. Russia, as well as the pro-Russian president Igor Dodon, warned the Government in Chisinau against such a move, which would force it to comply with the commitment it undertook at the OSCE Summit in Istanbul in 1999.

About author: Mihai Turcanu

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