Mazeiks: EU Continues Projects in Gagauzia, but Without Cooperation with Gutul

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EU Ambassador to Chisinau Janis Mazeiks said that the European Union continues to implement projects in Gagauzia, but does not consider it possible to maintain cooperation with the current bashkan, Evghenia Gutul. He said this during the programme “New Week with Anatol Golya” on TV8 channel. “There is no possibility of cooperation with Mrs Bashkan as long as there is no clarity, including on the issue of who she represents - the Gagauz people or a convicted criminal,” Mazeiks was quoted as saying. “There is a final verdict of the Moldovan court with regard to (Ilan) Sor, and if Evghenia Gutul continues to speak on behalf of Sor and ‘his team’, it is very difficult for us to build cooperation with her,” he noted. At the same time, the diplomat stressed that the EU’s cooperation with Gagauzia continues. “This does not mean that we stop our cooperation and projects in Gagauzia. It is important for us that the whole country develops and supports the process of European integration. But with the bashkan at the moment, we do not see any possibility to build cooperation,” Janis Mazeiks concluded. On Monday, President Maia Sandu said that she does not intend to sign a decree on the inclusion of Gagauz Bashkan Evghenia Gutul in the Moldovan government as long as she “continues to work for a criminal group”. Gutul constantly emphasizes that she implements projects in Gagauzia with funds from fugitive oligarch Ilan Sor. She also refers to Sor, who has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for his involvement in the theft of a billion dollars from Moldovaэs banking system, as “our leader.”