Russia Issues Thinly Veiled Threat Against Moldova After Decision to Join EU | Global report

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Russia, amid a bloody attrition war in Ukraine, issued thinly veiled threats to the former Soviet republic of Moldova on Friday after the European Union endorsed it and Ukraine for possible membership at the block.

“There is nothing to say about Ukraine here, everything is clear there, but now we see Moldova, which wants to become Europeans more than Europeans themselves,” Dmitry Peskov told reporters. Kremlin Friday morning. He added that Moldova “for some reason associates this candidate status with anti-Russianism. The more anti-Russian they become, the more they think the more Europeans should like them.

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“We really wouldn’t want that to happen,” Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman said, according to a translation of his remarks.

Peskov spoke in response to questions on EU policy disputed decision Thursday to grant candidate status to the two former Soviet states at a time of hostilities in Europe unprecedented since the end of World War II. Russia remains locked in a bitter conflict in eastern Ukraine and has intensified its military presence in Moldova – as he did around Ukraine before his February 24 invasion – all under the guise of defending what he sees as pro-Russian breakaway regions from vague persecution. Moldova, a landlocked country that borders Ukraine to the southwest of that country, has a population of around 3.8 million.

It is unclear how long Russia will be able to sustain the campaign, his own losses on the battlefield and the economic balance sheet as well as other forms of isolation the West has imposed on it as blocs such as the EU become more unified. Putin has the same to be under intense pressure for the spillover crises his invasion caused, including preventing Ukraine from exporting essential food shipments overseas.

Wendy Sherman, the State Department’s second diplomat, on Thursday welcomed the idea of ​​Ukraine and Moldova joining the EU shortly before the official announcement, as well as the effect she thinks it will have on Putin.

“He wanted a weakened NATO. He has a stronger NATO. He wanted a weakened European Union. It has a stronger European Union. He wanted a weakened transatlantic relationship. It has a stronger transatlantic relationship,” the Deputy Secretary of Defense said at an event hosted by the Atlantic Council, alongside Stefano Sannino, Secretary General of the EU’s External Action Service. EU. “We are ready. I hope he makes the wise decision.”

The Ukrainian government has expressed relief at the move – part of a wider move by Kyiv to align itself more closely with Western organizations that enraged Putin and, many believe, prompted his invasion.

“Russia’s military aggression will not succeed in depriving Europeans of the right to lead a normal and decent life. Ukraine will win. Europe will win,” Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba and EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell said in a joint video statement.

“Today marks the beginning of a long journey that we will travel together. We will immediately launch preparations for Ukraine’s integration into European structures and its definitive accession to the European Union,” they said. declared – a tacit recognition of the reforms that Ukraine needs to put in place to achieve full member status.

Several analysts have noted these reforms, including the fight against corruption and the influence of oligarchs, as a significant obstacle.

“For Kyiv, the membership carrot would be a strong incentive for structural and institutional change,” the newspaper’s editorial board said. FinancialTimes wrote.

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