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EU - Moldova: What Perspectives for the Eastern Partnership in Moldova?

Octavian Rusu

Moldova's first reaction to the European Partnership was very negative. The then communist President of Moldova, V. Voronin has openly criticized the EaP for the lack of the integration perspective characterizing it as 'another CIS', but this time 'under EU control', and has stated that the proposed additional funding is nothing else than a 'candy'. The situation has significantly changed after the July 2009 legislative elections when a new Government was formed by the Alliance for European Integration (AEI), composed by democratic and liberal parties eager to implement required democratic reforms and accelerate Moldova's European integration becoming thus the Eastern Partnership's 'front-runner' and a potential 'success story'. Today, however, experts are less optimistic pointing to the ongoing political crisis (do to the impossibility of the Parliament to elect a President) and to Russia's influence in Moldova. Thus, in order to assess the perspectives for the EaP in Moldova we will, first, focus on the domestic level, analyzing Moldova's democratization process under the conditions of political stalemate, and, secondly, we will approach the external challenges - the Russian influence. Here we will try to understand whether Russia is pursuing an anti-European stance in Moldova or is it motivated by developing a pragmatic and normal relation with Moldova in the 'reset' context with the West.

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