Moldova since 1991
Independence of the USSR
The 27 of August of 1991, the government of Moldova declared its independence from the USSR. A month later, they proclaimed themselves the independent republics of Dniester (Transnistria) and Gagaucia, opposed to the independence of Moldavia and its union with Romania.
In December, the first presidential elections were held, in which Mircea Snégur was elected. In March of 1992 Moldova was admitted as a new member of the UN. The political spectrum was divided between the forces that spoke out for reunification with Romania and those who insisted on independence. In the parliamentary elections, the pro-independence parties obtained a large majority and in August the new Constitution came into force, declaring the State independent and democratic.
In 1995, President Snégur accelerated the privatization program of public companies and facilitated the entry of foreign capital, but did not achieve greater adherence to his policy and, in the November 1996 elections, he was defeated by Petru Lucinschi, who continued with the economic reforms. Lucinschi began, in 1999, a new stage of privatization, by putting up for sale the monopoly of telecommunications and the electricity sector, which were plagued by inefficiencies.
After winning the Communist Party elections, Vladimir Voronin became president in April of 2001 and Vladimir Tarlev was appointed Prime Minister. One of the first measures of the government was the teaching of Russian as a compulsory language – in a country where 70% of the population spoke Romanian.
In November 2003, a Moscow proposal to federalize the country to give Transnistria some autonomy brought the nationalist opposition to the streets, before and even after President Voronin refused to sign the agreement. The opposition accused the president of favoring rapprochement with Moscow (which had 2,500 soldiers in the region and a large deposit of missiles and artillery) and requested peacekeepers. Voronin’s supporters, for their part, accused Washington and the EUof using the fragility of that area to expand their influence in the east.
Moscow made the withdrawal of its troops from Transnistria in 2004 conditional on a previously agreed solution to the conflict. In July, the Transnistrian authorities closed a series of schools that used, in their classrooms, the Latin alphabet – official of the country – instead of Cyrillic – considered official by those who defend the independence of the region. The central government imposed economic sanctions on Transnistria.
On the eve of the March 2005 elections, relations between Chisinau and Moscow deteriorated. Voronin expelled 20 Russian citizens, accusing us of espionage, and did not allow 100 Russian observers to enter the elections. The position of Voronin and his Communist Party – very little akin to the old Soviet ideology and increasingly turned towards the EU – was consolidated after the electoral victory. Voronin was confirmed for a second term as president and Tarlev continued as prime minister.
Chisinau, through parliament, called for Russia to withdraw all its troops by the end of 2006. The statement was issued after a special session of the Moldovan parliament to discuss a plan for the region proposed by Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko.
In obedience to the requirements of EU control smuggling, the government began requiring, in March of 2006, all products that enter the country -including those who made it from Ukraine for Transnistria had customs documentation. Transnistrian authorities considered the measure a disguised financial sanction. In turn, Chisinau denounced that Moscow’s decision to suspend the importation of Moldovan wine – arguing for health reasons – was politically motivated.
In 2007, the country experienced the worst drought in 50 years. The lack of rainfall affected 80% of the territory; Furthermore, in July the temperatures hovered around 40 degrees for two consecutive weeks. Voronin decreed that imports of wheat, flour and barley would stop paying tariffs, in an attempt to guarantee the production of bread, the basis of the family basket. In turn, the government requested immediate assistance from the international community to avoid a food crisis; most of the country’s production had been lost.
According to youremailverifier, Moldova is a member state of the United Nations, the WTO, the OSCE, Guam, the CIS, and other international organizations. Moldova currently aspires to join the European Union and is implementing its first three years the Action Plan within the framework of the EU’s European Neighborhood Policy (ENP).
The present Constitution of Moldova entered into force in July of 1994 and subsequently amended in the year 2004.
The main legislative body is Parliament, a unicameral assembly of 104 deputies. Voters elect deputies and the president for a five-year term. The president elects the members of the Council of Ministers to assist in government functions.
The most prominent political parties in Moldova are the Agrarian Democratic Party, led by the former communists, the Popular Front, favorable to the incorporation of Moldova into Romania ; and various socialist groups.