In addition to Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova is now also pushing for membership of the European Union – out of fear of Russia. “The EU is our only chance to build a country where the citizens can decide their fate,” Prime Minister Maia Sandu said at a parliamentary session in the capital Chisinau on Thursday.
“In 2030, Moldova must be a member of the EU and seize the opportunity to become an equal part of the European family,” Sandu said. “How long will it take us? It all depends on us.” Sandu repeatedly accused Moscow of wanting to destabilize her country. “Only threats and blackmail come from the Kremlin” as well as “war, suffering and poverty”. The small ex-Soviet republic with 2.6 million inhabitants has made a pro-Western turn in recent years and thus enraged Moscow. In June 2022, Moldova was granted EU candidate status. Sandu had previously accused Russia of pushing ahead with a concrete plan to overthrow her government with the help of saboteurs disguised as demonstrators Russian-speaking majority of the population. In addition, around 1,500 soldiers of the Russian army are stationed there. In February, Russia threatened “retaliation” if Ukrainian forces “provoked” Russian forces stationed in Transnistria.