On Vitaly Ignatiev and Alexei Pushkov’s Press Conference on the 30th Anniversary of the Peacekeeping Operation in Pridnestrovie


A press conference was held in the international multimedia press center of the Russia Today news agency with Vitaly Ignatiev, Pridnestrovian Foreign Minister, and Alexei Pushkov, Chairman of the Provisional Commission of the Federation Council on Information Policy and Media Relations. The event was timed to coincide with the 30th anniversary of the peacekeeping operation on the Dniester.

In his welcoming speech, Vitaly Ignatiev called the peacekeeping operation unique, creating conditions for a stable peace and security on the banks of the Dniester and laying the foundation for the beginning of a political settlement of Moldovan-Pridnestrovian relations.

“All the Pridnestrovian people are profoundly grateful to the Russian Federation for the peacekeeping operation, which made it possible to live, develop, raise children and plan the future more confidently. And despite the regional and global turbulence, especially now, we hope that this peacekeeping mechanism will be stable enough and strong enough to prevent the escalation of tension in the regional space,” the PMR Foreign Minister said.

Vitaly Ignatiev pointed out some aspects of the peacekeeping mechanism. First of all, he stressed the uniqueness of the mechanism, which does not allow one party to unilaterally hinder its work, but for many years the Moldovan political leadership has been constantly trying to create difficulties for this mechanism, to ‘squeeze’ the Russian Federation from the regional space, stating in general that the peacekeeping operation is obsolete and it needs to be transformed.

“Dear Moldovan colleagues, for 30 years we have been working toward a settlement of relations. What prevents the Chisinau leadership from showing a responsible approach, from sitting down at the negotiating table with Pridnestrovie and agreeing on a peaceful coexistence that takes into account the rights and interests of the people who live in Pridnestrovie and Moldova, objective realities and historical preconditions?” the Foreign Minister asked.

Vitaly Ignatiev underlined that about 200 agreements were signed between Pridnestrovie and Moldova in the past period that are not implemented by the Moldovan side. Moreover, Chisinau creates problems of social and humanitarian, economic, banking and financial nature.

According to the PMR Foreign Minister, both the regional space and the world as a whole have not stood still in the past years. We are talking about Moldova’s active militarization, the development of its army according to NATO standards: “This is certainly a factor that threatens stability, peace and security. In these conditions, the peacekeeping operation acquires even greater importance.” It was natural that the Pridnestrovian President’s initiative for the participants of the international negotiating format to adopt the declaration on the prevention of escalation and tension and preservation of peace on the banks of the Dniester, including Pridnestrovie, especially against the background of certain bellicose statements and attacks against the republic from the neighboring states.

Vitaly Ignatiev recalled the series of terrorist acts that took place in Pridnestrovie between April and June this year, describing them as a destabilizing factor. So far, there has been no reaction from the negotiation process participants. The European vector of development that Moldova has chosen does not take into account the interests of Pridnestrovie, because back in 2006 the people of the republic expressed their desire to build an independent state and orientation toward the Russian Federation.

“We believe that a political moment has come, which requires all participants to take a more consistent and clear position on all fundamental issues. We propose to the Moldovan side peaceful good-neighborly relations. We propose to sign a treaty of peace, friendship, mutual understanding and good neighborliness, renouncing any aggressive plans. This, of course, will ensure long-term peace and security in the regional space,” said Vitaly Ignatiev.

In turn, Pushkov said that in world history, there has always been an opportunity to resolve conflicts peacefully and diplomatically, but the West opted for geopolitical confrontation. The situation in Pridnestrovie is unique, the senator believes, because over the years the conflict has been bloodless:

“Here, of course, is the merit of Russia, which keeps its peacekeeping contingent there, the merit of the Pridnestrovian leadership, which behaves in a very balanced and thoughtful way. Yes, the Pridnestrovian crisis is a crisis, but it can be an example to other states on how it is possible to maintain more or less normal functioning of the territory in a frozen state, ensuring the rights of the citizens who live in it.”

Today Moldova is progressively cutting off Pridnestrovie from itself, including symbolically, by banning the use of the St. George ribbon on the territory of Moldova:

“It would seem to be a trifle, but these are just different visions of the past, these are different assessments of the war against fascism, these are different ways of self-perception. The Moldovan leadership shows that it is abandoning the historical anti-fascist legacy that was generally at the core of the cultural ideological development of Europe throughout the postwar period, and is moving to some new paradigm.”