Kremlin decides to team up with Moldovan Communists - Kommersant

The Russian Federation authorities have decided to team up with the Moldovan authorities, against whom Moscow fought so desperately in the run-up to the 2005 parliamentary elections, influential Kommersant newspaper of Moscow wrote on Tuesday, commenting the visit being paid to Chisinau by Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov.
INFOTAG, 24 February 2009, 18:33

Moscow, February 24 ( INFOTAG ). The publication stresses this is Lavrov's first visit to Moldova, and it is taking place during a parliamentary campaign.

Kommersant quoted a source in the minister's delegation as saying, "If there exists a chance to influence the layout of political forces, one should use it, shouldn't he? Otherwise, state power in Moldova will be won by forces that will only play in favor of the Transnistrian authorities in their wish to finally bury the negotiation process".

The newspaper reckons that Moscow is behaving so not because it feels sympathy for President Voronin's Communist Party but because there is practically no alternative: "The thing is, one of the most real opponents to the Communist Party is the Liberal Party, a pro-Romania force. In such situation, Russia has to choose the least of two evils".

Kommersant further held that during his meeting with Moldovan President Vladimir Voronin, Sergey Lavrov will have a possibility to discuss a long-standing idea of organizing a meeting of Voronin and Transnistrian leader Igor Smirnov with Russia President Dmitry Medvedev.

"Such a tripartite 'summit' was going to be held yet last year. At it, the conflicting sides were to sign, in the Russian leader's presence, a document on an intention to solve the Transnistria problem exclusively within the territorially integral Republic of Moldova. However, that plan was upset by the war in South Ossetia and by aggravation of the Russian Federation's relations with the West. Now that passions around Georgia have settled, Moscow has returned to the last year's peacekeeping projects, and a Medvedev-Voronin-Smirnov meeting may take place yet before the April 5 parliamentary elections in Moldova", Kommersant wrote.

The paper presumes it would be quite good for Russia now to demonstrate its peacekeeping success in Transnistria. So Moscow, which is promoting Dmitry Medvedev's initiative on drafting a Treaty of European Security, would demonstrate to the West his capability of settling conflicts in the FSU area not solely by using force.