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Budanov: Transnistria not planning to appeal to join Russia

by Dominic Culverwell February 25, 2024 6:23 PM 2 min read
Cadets march along 25 October Street on Republic Day in Tiraspol, the capital of the breakaway Moldovan region of Transnistria, on Sept. 2, 2023. (Peter Dench/Getty Images)
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The Russian-controlled Moldovan region of Transnistria will not appeal to join Russia, Ukraine's military intelligence chief Kyrylo Budanov told reporters at the "Ukraine. Year 2024" forum on Feb. 25.

Concerns arose after the Institute for the Study of War issued a warning on Feb. 22 that Transnistria was possibly planning to organize a referendum on its annexation to Russia at an announced Transnistrian Congress of Deputies planned for Feb. 28.

“No one is going to join the Russian Federation on the 28th,” Budanov said, adding that there would be no problems for Ukraine which borders Transnistria.

Ukraine’s military intelligence (HUR) also wrote on its website on Feb. 25 that the rumor shows signs of a “deliberate disinformation campaign aimed at destabilizing the situation in the region.”

Transnistria is internationally recognized as part of Moldova. The region declared independence in 1991 following the 1991 Soviet coup d'état attempt. A cease-fire agreement between Moldova and Transnistria established a Russian military presence in the region.

There have been heightened tensions between Moldova and Transnistria since the beginning of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine when there were fears that armed conflict could erupt in Moldova.

Vadim Krasnoselsky, the Russian proxy leader in Transnistria, called for increased military drills and heightened readiness on Jan. 22 in what he claimed was a response to alleged provocations from Moldova.

Kyiv said it would "firmly respond" to any attempts to involve Transnistria in Russia's war against Ukraine and destabilize the situation in Moldova, the Foreign Ministry said on Feb. 20.

Moldova’s security chief says Russia spent $55 million on destabilization campaign
Russia has spent over a billion Moldovan lei ($55.45 million) on a campaign to destabilize the country, according to Alexandru Musteata, the head of Moldova’s Information and Security Service on Nov. 3.
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