Nina Shtanski on the Results of the Final Round of the 5+2 Negotiations in This Year

Nina Shtanski on the Results of the Final Round of the 5+2 Negotiations in This Year
Nina Shtanski on the Results of the Final Round of the 5+2 Negotiations in This Year

The final in this year round of negotiations in 5+2 format under the Ukrainian OSCE Chairmanship which took place on November 25-26, 2013 in Kiev ended with a briefing of political representatives of Pridnestrovie and Moldova Nina Shtanski and Yevgeny Karpov. On the results of the meeting also commented Special Representative of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office, Ambassador-at-Large Andrei Deshchitsa and Head of OSCE Mission in Moldova Jennifer Brush.

In her address Nina Shtanski expressed gratitude to the Ukrainian Chairmanship for those efforts which have been made during the whole year in order to maintain positive dynamics in the negotiations process. Political representative of Pridnestrovie especially noted that challenges were quite obvious. “For quite a long period of time Moldova underwent an internal political crisis. Besides there was a number of unsettled moments which to some extent hampered regular meetings of political representatives of the sides. Ukrainian diplomacy was quite successful in bringing the sides in working mood”, – she said. “We would like to point it out that Ukrainian Chairmanship, presented here by Special Representative of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office, Ambassador-at-Large Andrei Deshchitsa, was a combination of wisdom, flexibility and Ukrainian drive and it seriously assisted us in moving forward. The today's meeting is confirming it”, – head of PMR's MFA stated.

While estimating the results of the year Nina Shtanski noted that there was a number of decisions being made and all of them have been made in framework of “small steps tactics”. “This tactics proved its obvious efficiency which is especially important because it is also proclaimed in Ukraine in previous year during the meeting of the heads of the sides and that meeting took place due to invitation of Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine”, – Pridnestrovian senior diplomat said. According to Nina Shtanski, “small steps tactics” was supported by all participants of the 5+2 format. Ukrainian Chairmanship also laid stress on it which can be confirmed by the last Conference on Confidence-building Measures in Process of Pridnestrovian Conflict Settlement which took place in Landshut. Nina Shtanski pointed out that Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Leonid Kozhara also stressed out the importance of this tactics for the negotiations process in 5+2 format in his report.

As Nina Shtanski said, the participants of the negotiations made significant efforts in order to fill the negotiations space not only with discussed issues but also with concrete decisions in practical sphere. “Often the well-being of people both in Pridnestrovie and in Moldova depends on these decisions”, – Minister pointed out.

Nina Shtanski stated that: “Since the resumption of negotiations Pridnestrovie proposed 40 initiatives already. Among them are package proposal on building common space of successful cooperation in social and economic sphere. There also were initiatives which facilitate decision on dismantling of aerial ropeway in Rybnitsa. By the way, today we discussed this issue and there is hope that works shall start this year under Ukrainian Chairmanship. Also in this year was prolonged Agreement on railway freight transportation. As you probably know, earlier railway was blocked for railway transport operates for more than 6 years. This year, at the suggestion of Pridnestrovian side, Agreement was prolonged for more than a year and it makes this mechanism even more stable. We also proposed to agree on the wording in the Joint Action Plant in sphere of ecology and this plan is already signed. Today we discussed and remembered this experience. We also started work on decision which would settle issue with criminal cases which were opened by the sides against each-other's personnel when it was connected with their professional activities. On expert level there was active work conducted to resolve issues with pension coverage and social security of citizens who migrate from Moldova to Pridnestrovie and from Pridnestrovie to Moldova”.

Pridnestrovian senior diplomat also informed journalists that today the sides signed Protocol decision which approved the text which was already settled by the experts. According to her words, this decision shall benefit socially vulnerable strata of population (pensioners and other welfare recipients, including invalids).

Nina Shtanski also noted that the sides managed to make progress in extending possibilities for freedom of movement. “One of the most important issues we discussed for more than 2 years is a problem of securing freedom of movement for citizens of Pridnestrovie who hold passports of the Russian Federation and of Ukraine. There have been considerable restrictions – these people suffered from administrative measures, sanctions, etc. But recently Moldova's authorities decided to abolish such sanctions. I can state it now with satisfaction that today we managed to settle and to initial document by means of which this mechanism, already adopted my Moldovan side, shall receive internationally guaranteed form. We believe that it should make this decision more sustainable and it can allow to speak about its long-term stability. We consider that thus this decision becomes more protected from any unilateral actions. We hope that decision after it shall be signed by all participants of the 5+2 format will give us opportunity to move further in one more article of the larger document – the Protocol Decision on Freedom of Movement in frames of which we shall try to reach an agreement on organization of international freight and passenger service and to open bridge between villages of Bychok and Gura Bicului”, – she said.

According to political representative of Pridnestrovie, the sides also signed today Protocol Decision which would allow to bring assistance of German government to reconstruct water waste facilities in Dubossary and collector system in Kriulyany. Nina Shtanski pointed out that many decisions are made when international partners can see the consensus reached by the sides and their readiness to assist implementation of international projects. While estimating the signed document she called it “a good precedent and a step forward in bringing this approach to resolve many other problems where representatives of international community are ready to assist the sides”.

Nina Shtanski added that during the meeting were also discussed issues of cooperation in economic field. According to her, Pridnestrovie laid emphasis on those difficulties which domestic producers experience while conducting foreign trade activities. Political representative of Pridnestrovie noted that economic sphere is still one of the most sharp issues during negotiations because “situation in this field not only doesn't improve, but it is rapidly worsens”. At the same time, Nina Shtanski pointed out that this issue can be successfully resolved. She reminded about Pridnestrovian proposal about formation of “Common trade zone, free of mutual restrictions”. Nina Shtanski believes that lifting of mutual restrictions would promote formation of pragmatic, healthy, clear and normalized economic relations which means also opportunities for business development. “In this context I would like to remind a statement voiced out recently by newly-appointed head of EU Delegation in Moldova Mr. Pirkka Tapiola that everybody is equal in their right on development. I would like all the participants of negotiations to understand that enterprises located in Pridnestrovie should not face difficulties which are not faced by economic agents of neighboring territories. Otherwise it contradicts the logics of pragmatic cooperation”, - Minister of Foreign Affairs explained.

In conclusion of her address Nina Shtanski assessed today's meeting as a constructive and effective one. Political representative of Pridnestrovie noted that both initiated and signed documents are part of long-term and busy work. She expressed gratitude to Ukrainian Chairmanship for conditions created to assist dialogue of the sides and expressed hope that further meetings under joint Serbian-Swiss Chairmanship shall be not less effective.