Washington made a strong move reversing the chess board in the game for Moldova’s destiny.
Vladimir Rotar, RTA:
An almost sensational news appeared last night: in his official statement the USA State Secretary Mike Pompeo accused of “corrupt actions that compromised the independence of democratic institutions in Moldova” the former leader of the Moldovan Democratic Party Vlad Plahotniuc and stated that sanctions were imposed against the oligarch and his family. In particular, they will be deprived of the rights to receive American visas.
Such a move of the USA came as unexpected. According to many experts Washington played the crucial role during the last year June events. Namely after the short discussion with the American Ambassador to Moldova Dereck Hogan, Vlad Plahotniuc actually capitulated to PSRM and ACUM coalition and quickly left the country. Along with, as then considered, before ceding power the oligarch got certain guarantees – as personal security and the security of a possible law prosecution. Partly this version is confirmed by the fact that Plahotniuc got a shelter in the USA spending the last half of the year namely there, judging by the photos.
Naturally, after the coup new Moldovan authorities tried to extradite the former Moldovan owner to the homeland but in vain. Practically immediately started the investigation of his illegal actions and corruptive schemes and, thus, in August the Anticorruption Prosecution initiated a criminal case against the former PDM leader accusing him of creating a crime group, blackmailing, frauds and money-washing. On October, 29 he got internationally wanted. All this time, however, Washington remained silent on this issue, though, Plahotniuc’s extradition and his demonstrative judicatory would have been a really regal present from the USA to the new power.
Now, the Americans themselves renounce their former protégé – once and for all in a quite demonstrative manner: through the statement of State Secretary himself who personally announces sanctions and Plahotniuc’s corrupt regime. Such a “throw” of the puppet master is even more surprising since less than a year ago it was namely the United States to be considered the main cover of the Plahotniuc’s power and, actually, not in vain. However, apparently the previously almighty oligarch got considered as expired-life resource and arrived under the weight of the notorious foreign policy pragmatism of the USA where there’s absolutely no place for “friends” or “enemies”. At the end of all, even Saddam Hussein was once “their guy” and got anyway used to fight against the revolutionary Iran.
It is highly likely that Pompeo’s statement put an end to the hypothetical Plahitniuc’s revenge on which stated many experts after the creation of the informal coalition between the socialists and the democrats. It is interesting, that big-time politicians from both the right and the left flank hastened to join such a notorious event. For example, the PAS leader Maia Sandu thanked the USA Government who set in motion “our request on the oligarch’s punishment” and hinted to an analogical ending for the current President. At his turn Igor Dodon gave generous praises to Washington, never leaving behind the direct requests addressed to the USA.
Even though, it is quite obvious that such a big “present” is gifted to Chisinau far from Dodon. It is more probable, thus the USA give start to the realization of their new strategy on Moldova for the next years. It’s easy understandable that the priority aim – is the quick closing up of Dodon and socialists’ ruling and power return to the pro-western forces. In this context the Plahotniuc’s arrest and further investigation is to play not the least role.
There are no doubts, that the once almighty oligarch disposes a lot of “spicy” information capable to easy compromise a lot of current Moldovan politicians even the highest profile ones. Within a total country control, that once the puppet master possessed, any big-time Moldovan politician one way or another has become a part of his criminal schemes and far not democratic decisions (or had to leave politics). There’s an opinion that Plahotniuc has weather given already this information to the corresponding USA authorities or will get forced to do it within a further court investigation (to, as an example, shorten the jail-term).
All the compromising information that Plahotniuc is to give will be used to “neutralize” the unwanted by the USA politicians in Chisinau during the elections or to organize protests in masses – in case of “unfavorable” voting results. That is why assessing the move the USA made, one can definitely say that the decision on Plahotniuc – is a good sign for Moldova as a whole but a very troubling one for the current government.
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