How Long It Will Take to Restore Moldova-CIS Relations. Opinion

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The restoration of agreements with the CIS, from which Moldova withdrew, will be a complicated and long process for Moldova, which may last up to 10 years. This opinion was expressed by the head of Moldova’s delegation to the CIS Interparliamentary Assembly, Adrian Lebedinschi, in an interview with the Izvestia newspaper. According to him, there should be a “very strong political will” of Moldova’s CIS partners in this issue. “If the leadership of the countries will be unanimous that it is urgent to save the situation and restore Moldova in all these agreements, it can be done in a year or two. And if there are some debates, if someone does not agree, I think it might take 10 years,” the head of the delegation said. He drew attention to the fact that it will be necessary to agree separately on each protocol and memorandum. “I think it will take years. Remember how many years it took for us to join the CIS, how many years it took to sign the first agreements. It’s not going to be that easy. Moreover, there are also different opinions inside the CIS now,” Lebedinschi said. According to him, the topic of Moldova’s withdrawal from the CIS agreements worries Moldovans who have ties with the Commonwealth countries and they perceive this topic painfully. “People are interested in it, especially businesses and those who have relatives in the CIS. For them it is truly painful,” Lebedinschi admitted. In his opinion, the only way out that Moldova has is to explain to its external partners “that it is wrong, that decisions to withdraw from agreements within the CIS should be taken by consent in parliament, and there are decisions that should not be touched.” Lebedinschi believes that breaking ties with the CIS is favorable to Western countries, as they are “very unhappy that Moldova has an additional market,” and they want to bind the republic only to their markets. As reported earlier, the majority of Moldovan citizens are against breaking relations with the CIS and against joining to the anti-Russian sanctions. It is evidenced by the survey’s data conducted in late June by the sociological company CBS AXA at the request of the Institute for European Policies and Reforms (IPRE). Many Moldovans associate the country’s accession to the EU with prosperity and development. At the same time, many Moldovans do not see a bright future neither in the EU nor in other associations. However, they prefer neutrality, development of their country and coexistence, as well as improvement of relations with both the East and the West.