Less than a week after the deportation of two Russian consuls from Estonia on Monday with things on the way out asked five Russian diplomats in Moldova. On Tuesday, Prime Minister Pavel Filip explained that the decision on deportation of diplomats made on the basis of information from state security services, but no details of it are not reported.
A note of protest about the expulsion of diplomats Moldovan foreign Ministry sent the Russian colleagues on Monday evening. At the moment we know the name of only one Russian, who became a persona non grata in Chisinau, is an assistant military attaché Alexander Grudin. In March of this year, the Moldovan security services has accused a Russian foreign Ministry employee recruiting and obtaining secret information from ex-member of Parliament Yuri bolbochanu. According to local prosecutors, for their services Bolboceanu received fees from 100 to one thousand dollars. Moldovan politics now faces a prison term of 12 to 20 years under article “Espionage” and “Treason”. In the Russian Embassy in Chisinau did not comment on the incident.
The President of Moldova, Igor Dodon, who has a reputation as a Pro-Russian leader, has called the Ministry’s decision on the expulsion of diplomats direct provocation. Dodon believes that in this way the European Parliament is trying to worsen the Russian-Moldovan relations, which have just started to improve thanks to his efforts. The President did not rule out that this decision was dictated by the West, as the ocean, according to Dodon, concerned about the effective and constructive dialogue between the President and the Kremlin.
“I warn the government with all the responsibility that she took the decision to get involved in geopolitical games of Brussels and Washington, as well as in the game of NATO’s military structures in this region is very dangerous,” he wrote on his page in the social network of Igor Dodon.
The Russian foreign Ministry similarly condemned the decision of the Moldovan colleagues and warned of harsh retaliatory measures. Under the measures, most likely, means the deportation of five Moldovan diplomats. As practice shows, such measures are invoked in case of such situations. Official representative of the Russian Ministry Maria Zakharova believes that the announcement of five diplomats persona non grata does not apply to their activities, but only shows heating up the situation in Moldova.
Head of the Department of Pridnestrovie and Moldova of the CIS Institute Sergey Lavrenov said that the decision to expel Russian diplomats may be several reasons:
“Of course, this step can be associated with the increasing confrontation between two main political forces of Moldova — the President Igor Dodon and the head of the democratic party Vladimir Plahotniuc, controlling most of the political elite of the country. After the decision on deportation of the Russians was taken right after the return of Plahotniuc from Washington, where he met with members of Congress, state Department, security Council of the White house and other U.S. government agencies. During the visit, the Moldovan Democrat discussed the creation of a Fund to limit Russian influence in the country (in 2018-2019 to Finance anti-Russian Fund will allocate up to $ 250 million).
In addition, at the moment there were problems with obtaining the next financial tranche from the EU in the amount of 100 million euros. However, we must not forget that there were several scandals at the international level, which, according to the Moldovan secret services could be involved diplomats. One of these incidents was the fact that the detection of transfer of money from Russia, where Moldova has played the role of mediator. It also could be the reason for the deportation of Russian citizens. However, such cases require joint investigations Moldova and Russia”.