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LGBT solidarity march in Moldova stopped due to fear of clashes with orthodox counter protesters

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The “Without Fear” March organized by GENDERDOC-M in the center of Chișinău was stopped by the police because of several incidents provoked by the ultra-orthodox counter protesters.

“Without Fear” March March was organized to attract the attention of the public opinion to the rights of the LGBT people, while the Family Festival/March was set up by the Socialists’ Party to promote the traditional family values.

At the intersection of București and Alecsandri streets, the marches met each other. The ultra-orthodox protesters led by priests and accompanied by people with “New Right” T-shirts started to throw eggs and insults to the protesters “Without Fear”. Some hundreds policemen successfully separated the two opposite groups.

At some point, the police had to evacuate protesters “without fear” in two buses to avoid violent clashes.









Currently studying International Relations at the University of Pécs, Hungary. Study focus: Transnistrian conflict settlement, Moldovan statehood, Moldovan democracy. Inquiries at [email protected]

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Moldova’s mass migration – the main trigger for the economic and demographic decline

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People leave Moldova every day. Nowadays, not only young people leave the country, but elder ones do it as well. It is also the case for Serafima Gherman – a former biology and chemistry teacher, who decided to leave her home country and to head for Milano, Italy.

Our colleagues from Moldova.org spent the day before she left at her place while she was preparing her luggage for leaving. She seems to be down in the mouth. So many years spent in this house…

When Serafima was young she dreamed to become an artist. She secretly applied at the musical college. Her voice was wonderful. When her father, who was a doctor, got to know, he gave her a good beating and told her that the big stages would handle it somehow without her. So, she studied at a technical college and graduated the Pedagogical University from Tiraspol being married with 2 children.  Together with her husband, she built a big house and raised the children. A few years ago her husband passed away. It seems like it was only yesterday.

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Serafima Gherman in her house

Sitting on the floor, she tried to put her thoughts in order and to arrange her belongings in the luggage. First, she was wondering if the pieces of frozen meat, packages of parsley, lovage and traditional cheese made from sheep milk will fit into the blue valise next to her. She was aware that the place she goes to is full of cheese and meat of any kind, but she also knew that the home-made food can’t be compared to anything. And then, she didn’t know how much time it will take until returning home. What if the meat rots?

The next thing Serafima took care for were her clothes, carefully arranged in a plastic bag, as well as her medicines. Still, it was too much stuff. Her grandson assured her that all the things that don’t fit in the valise will be brought by his mom, Serafima’s daughter, next time when she comes to Moldova. She also lives and works in Italy.

Serafima looked around one more time. She checked the papers and the medicines to not forget anything, and started to slowly move to the kitchen. She was crying. “It is very hard, living my entire life in one place and taking to the road now, when I am old. Who will take care of my house while I am gone?” she asked herself. Everything is left behind: a small house with a kitchen, a bathroom, a bedroom and the most important, a sparkly clean living room called in Romanian “casa mare”. Nobody lives in there. It’s for guests.

She sadly inspected the yard that has the softest and the greenest grass ever. Once it was full of hungry poultry: geese, ducks, chickens. Now it is so silent. All of them were slaughtered one after another as there was nobody who could take care of them while she was visiting her daughter in Italy.

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Serafima with her daughter, Angela

She never thought of being always on the road. Her heart was always weak and then the problems with blood pressure appeared. So, she had to travel a lot: from the local hospital in Brânzenii Vechi to the district hospital in Telenești, and then to Chișinău. Nobody knew what the health issue was. Only when her daughter Angela bought her a ticket to Italy, the physicians discovered the small intestine cancer. After long beggings from her daughter, Serafima accepted to be operated. In Italy, she got her residence permit and the papers for obtaining the 100% degree of disability, as she was hardly able to move and was in poor health. Now she must go to the doctor regularly. “I have to leave for a new consult. It happens every couple of months. I can’t be taken care of in my own country.”

It has been going on for several years now. And she cries every time. Her house fell into disrepair while it is so comfortable and nice in Italy, but so foreign. It’s like there is no life for her in that world.

She was wearing her favourite floral pink dress and a wool cardigan, as it was already quite cold. Leaning on her walking stick, Serafima slowly walked to the gateway, where a car was already waiting for her to take her to the airport in Chișinău. All she could do more was to ask her neighbour to come and check the house from time to time. Nobody knew when she would return, maybe after a couple of months, maybe in summer. Her grandson Liviu helped her with the luggage and nodded affirmatively while receiving indications from his grandma: “Buy some poison against mice and spread it in the corners and under the bed. Move that gas tank in the garage. I don’t want it to be stolen!”

They arrived at the airport and headed directly to the check-in desk. The luggage was already given, the check-in done, and a wheel chair was waiting for Serafima. Tears filled her eyes again. She hugged her beloved grandson and let herself to be guided to the departure gate. There were some other old people that were waiting to be boarded. Most probably they also flown to visit their children.

Republic of Moldova loses her citizens in a matter of hours. Namely, every hour four people leave the country seeking for a better life, according to BBC. In 2017 only, the number of persons over 15 years old that were established abroad for work purposes reached 318.4 thousand, out of which 20.2 thousand are persons aged over 55, as the official data by the National Statistical Office of Moldova states. In case the trend continues, it could lead to a demographic and economic collapse.

Featured image source: lufthansa.com
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President Igor Dodon: Russian troops have to leave Transnistria, but not now

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President Igor Dodon refuses to say directly that Russian troops within the GOTR are illegally present on the territory of Moldova amid the fact that they must leave our country, once this is stipulated in Moldova’s status of neutrality.

When asked for an opinion on the presence of Russian troops from GOTR on the territory of Moldova, this is Igor Dodon’s answer:

“In Moldova there are peacekeepers and, the Operational Group of the Russian Troops is a limited group of soldiers. It is not a military base, but soldiers who keep the 14th Army munitions,” declared Dodon at a press conference in which he spoke about the results of his visit to Moscow

He furthermore made it clear that Russian soldiers are illegally on the territory of Moldova, though not having stated it clearly and directly.

“We will sit down, discuss, and find a solution. It’s not just once that we’ve discussed about this with Vladimir Vladimirovich (former President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin) about this.”

While President Dodon says that Russian GOTR soldiers are “a limited group of soldiers,” they often participate in various military applications on the left bank of the Dniester River. Three months ago, the Russian soldiers prepared for the fourth consecutive year to “force” the Nistru River. The Russian officials then said that the exercises aimed at so-called “overcoming obstacles on the Dniester River”.

The Chisinau Defense Ministry has always called on GOTR troops to refrain from such provocative maneuvers but was ignored.

Reminder: The ex-Defense Minister of the Republic of Moldova, Anatol Salaru, and his Ukrainian counterpart, Stepan Poltorak, have come to an understanding, namely that Ukraine is ready to prepare a “green corridor” for the evacuation of the Russian troops and weapons in Colbasna.

But how does Dodon see the reunification of Moldova with Transnistria? One border, the rest remains as it is

President Igor Dodon considers that the Transnistrian conflict can be solved only if the Moldovan plan is accepted and if there is a consensus between the three institutional powers in Chisinau – Executive, Legislative and Presidency – on the given subject.

On the other hand, in an interview with TASS, Dodon assumes that there is nothing to change – outside the common border of Moldova – Transnistria: the flags, the parliament, the president.

“We’re in the same boat here. Many times, have I said that the left side can’t go in one direction and the right side in the other. […] There oughtn’t be the Russian plan, because the West won’t receive it. It oughtn’t be the Western plan, because Russia won’t accept it. Only the plan of the Republic of Moldova can be accepted at international level and this will be a success for all parties involved.”

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The Economist: Moldova is the only country with a substantial complaint against Britain’s application process

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After Britain filed to rejoin the Government Procurement Agreement, now finds its bid unexpectedly blocked by a country that stands between Great Britain and a global public-projects market worth $1.7trn a year.

Moldova – the only country with a substantial complaint – called for simplified visa procedures for its citizens and firms, citing worries that its companies might face the same hold-ups as its envoys within the blocking of Britain’s bid to rejoin the GPA, writes The Economist, stating that the landlocked ex-soviet country is one of Brexit’s potential obstacles.

Our country, in doubt Britain’s application along with America and New Zealand, while several others have expressed administrative concerns regarding missing information about post-Brexit trade relationships.

However, Moldova is unlikely to stand alone against Britain after the administrative objections of other nations are solved. Britain is bidding for access to a global procurement market (currently worth some $88bn a year) 20 times that size, holding a weak negotiating position. While Moldova’s stand shows that sales can come from surprising places and for unknown reasons, other countries may use the current condition to extract settlements, such as preferential terms in post-Brexit trade negotiations.

According to The Economist, a Moldovan opposition politician (Mihai Popsoi), suggests that Moldova’s government is seeking token concessions to improve its bad reputation at home.

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