The situation within Chisinau and Tiraspol relations begins escalating again.
The 2020 year only began but the situation in the negotiation process is already unquiet. Hardly had changed the special OSCE representative on the Transdniestrian conflict settlement than new negative tendencies began developing in this direction. There’s no doubt they would further worsen the atmosphere of the enough difficult relationship between Chisinau and Tiraspol.
Over the past week in the social nets of both right and left sides there’s an active wide spreading information that Moldovan government has taken a range of organizational decisions which cease the long term functioning exception on admittance of vehicles registered in Transdniestria to the international traffic. Simply saying, the given transport category will no longer be let out from the territory of the Republic of Moldova.
It is well known that the vehicle issues are within complicated processes and the first signs of a next crisis appeared back at the end of the last year. The enough restrained statements of the officials from Chisinau and Tiraspol would allow at that very moment to conclude that the situation was under control despite all disagreements between the sides. However, apparently the common diseased negotiation process state led to a transport problem aggravation nevertheless.
The dynamics observed on this issue over the past years is wholly connected to the in-region situation. After the start of the well-known events in the neighboring Ukraine Chisinau and Tiraspol were forced to hold more active work on an optimal form of the Transdniestrian vehicle participation in the international traffic. As a result of complex negotiations in April 2018 an according agreement was signed. But as time passed the mechanism began stumbling, be it because of hurry or specifics of the worked out decision. One of the key problem became the issue of driver’s licenses: Chisinau refused to let out the drivers possessing documents issued from the left bank.
It seemed the after the agreement in 2018 the situation was to continue regressively smolder. That’s why it is difficult to say what forced Chisinau to “add fuel to the fire” within this issue and take new measures that are unlikely to please Tiraspol. Notwithstanding that the left bank inhabitants do still have the possibility to road out through checkpoints uncontrolled by the constitutional authorities on the border with Ukraine, it is highly possible that in the near future the moldovan border police is to come to grips with “Transdniestrian plates” at the same Kuchurhan.
Under the given circumstances, besides the Moldovan obvious reason to take under control all the left bank transport, is important the position of the neighboring Ukraine. Kiev has not stated it yet but is most probably that the new Ukrainian ambassador to Moldova is to clarify it. Meanwhile, is also difficult to predict Tiraspol’s reaction. Though, taking into account the urgency of the situation and the settlement history (enough to recall the 2006 and the ban on export operations for Transdniestria) one may assume that the negotiation process risks to again get in a more than difficult situation.
If Kiev is not ready to support the moldovan colleagues than diverse reactions might come from the left side administration and as a result both moldovan and ukrainian car enthusiasts might suffer. Chisinau and Tiraspol opposition history knows a lot of possible plot development beginning with rails sitting to different bans on the Transdniestrian territory movement. That is why the first highly probable response measure may become the restriction of Moldovan transport to road out through the uncontrolled by the constitutional authorities segment of the moldovan-ukrainian border.
One must suppose that if Chisinau and Tiraspol won’t be able to reach at least a temporary agreement on the transport issue in a fast-track manner, then we’re all going to witness the next tension that will negatively reflect on the freedom of movement of citizens of the Republic of Moldova and will set a negative “tone” to the negotiation process between Moldova and Transdniestria in the 2020.
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