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News 29 January 2016, at 12:46

Moldovan instability affecting ties with Turkey

Marime Font

Turkey’s relations with Moldova are hampered by instability within the former Soviet republic, the Turkish ambassador said Thursday.

“The instability in Moldova is the obstacle to improved relations between the two countries,” Mehmet Selim Kartal, Turkey’s envoy to Chisinau, told an Anadolu Agency reporter in the capital.

“The country is going through a long and difficult period in terms of economic and political crisis.”



Turkey and Moldova have a strategic partnership and in June 2014 lifted visa requirements between the two countries and implemented a free trade agreement three months later.

“Turkey and Moldova have a common policy towards integration with Europe,” Kartal said. “The new prime minister of Moldova, Pavel Filip, wants to strengthen the relations with Turkey.”

Moldova has been wracked by corruption and unrest since last year when 1 billion euros ($1.09 billion) vanished from three banks in a suspected embezzlement. The loss — equivalent to 14 percent of Moldova’s GDP — put huge strain on the country’s finances.

Since then, the country has seen five prime ministers resign amid allegations of high-level corruption and street protests that some claim are engineered by Moscow, angered by the government’s pro-Europe stance.

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