DISINFORMATION: 40% of the Republic of Moldova’s territory will be controlled by foreign policemen

A border police officer helps fleeing Ukraine pass the border in Palanca Village, Moldova, 07 March 2022.
© EPA-EFE/DUMITRU DORU   |   A border police officer helps fleeing Ukraine pass the border in Palanca Village, Moldova, 07 March 2022.

Disinformation

The Republic of Moldova will be controlled by armed policemen from other countries, according to media outlets affiliated to the Socialist Party. In fact, several dozen experts will be charged with supporting Moldovan border policemen in overseeing border crossing procedures and managing the flow of refugees.

NEWS: “Alexandr Nesterovschi, a deputy with the Bloc of Communists and Socialists, has raised a red flag: 40% of the territory of the Republic of Moldova will be controlled by armed policemen from other countries. He made this statement on the sidelines of a Parliament sitting, as the PAS Cabinet was presenting a draft law on ratifying the Agreement between the Republic of Moldova and the European Union regarding operations carried out by the European Border and Coast Guard Agency in the Republic of Moldova. 

“With respect to the information you presented, the operations can be conducted some 30 km from the border area, meaning that approximately 40% of the territory of the Republic of Moldova will be targeted by these operations, and that foreign armed individuals, who have no criminal liability in our country, can do virtually anything on our territory. How does that add up to the Republic of Moldova’s neutrality status?”, Nesterovschi asked.

“We are talking about 10 kilometers that are enshrined in the Constitution, an area that can be expanded by an additional 20 kilometers under special circumstances. Civilian forces are not affected by the neutrality status and have nothing to do with military forces”, the State Secretary with the Moldovan Interior Ministry, Serghei Diaconu, has said.

NARRATIVES: 1. 40% of the Republic of Moldova will be controlled by foreign policemen. 2. The presence of European law enforcement agents is breaching the neutrality of the Republic of Moldova.

Reality

NARRATIVES: 1. 40% of the Republic of Moldova will be controlled by foreign policemen. 2. The presence of European law enforcement agents is breaching the neutrality of the Republic of Moldova.

BACKGROUND: On June 2, 2022, Parliament in Chișinău ratified the Agreement between the Republic of Moldova and the European Union regarding operations carried out by FRONTEX. Accordingly, 80 experts with the European Border and Coast Guard Agency will be providing support to the Moldovan Border Police in managing the flow of refugees on the Moldovan-Ukrainian border.

In the context of the war in Ukraine, over 400 thousand people crossed into the Republic of Moldova, and nearly 100 thousand Ukrainian refugees have stayed on its territory. For the first time in its history, the Republic of Moldova was faced with a high flow of refugees. The authorities fear that, should military operations reach as far south as Odessa, the refugee crisis could get worse.

The Agreement between the Republic of Moldova and the European Union regarding operations carried out by the European Border and Coast Guard Agency in the Republic of Moldova was signed on March 17, 2022 in Brussels. So far, Moldovan authorities have cooperated with FRONTEX based on a binding agreement signed in 2008, which stipulates the deployment of a limited number of European experts with observer status.

The draft law sparked heated debates in Parliament. Socialist and Communist MPs accused the Government that allowing European policemen on the territory of the Republic of Moldova would represent a breach of the country’s neutrality status.

PURPOSE: The narratives are designed to accuse the West of breaching the neutrality of the Republic of Moldova, as well as the Government in Chișinău of handing over control of its territory to external forces.

WHY THE NARRATIVES ARE FALSE: The purpose of the Agreement is to create the necessary legal framework allowing the General Border Police Inspectorate, the Interior Ministry and FRONTEX to carry out joint operations on the territory of the Republic of Moldova. This will allow the authorities to better manage the regional refugee crisis, handle a high flow of refugees and improve the security of the Republic of Moldova. At the same time, the agreement will help develop and consolidate cooperation with the EU in the field of border management and security. The agreement will help FRONTEX assist the Republic of Moldova in managing its borders by dispatching teams on the ground to support the Moldovan authorities in fulfilling such tasks registration and border checks, a press release of the European Council reads.

This is an entirely civilian project. There are no military forces taking part in these missions, which means the neutrality of the Republic of Moldova is not violated in any way. Only the Russian Federation breaches this status by illegally maintaining troops on the territory of the Republic of Moldova, refusing to withdraw them despite having made international commitments in this respect. Besides, a few dozen policemen will never be able to control such a vast territory.

The narratives regarding the West’s control over the Republic of Moldova were at the heart of disinformation spread by the pro-Russian Party of Socialists (PSRM) once the power reins were taken over by the pro-European Action and Solidarity Party (PAS), founded by president Maia Sandu.

Tags: War in Ukraine
  • Publication / Media:
    Telegraph.md
  • Date of publication:
    02/06/2022
  • Amplification:
    a-tv.md, socialistii.md
  • Political affiliation:
    PSRM
  • Key narrative:
    40% of the Republic of Moldova’s territory will be controlled by foreign policemen
Mariana Vasilache




Mariana Vasilache

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24 minutes read
  • The Republic of Moldova will be controlled by armed policemen from other countries, according to media outlets affiliated to the Socialist Party. In fact, several dozen experts will be charged with supporting Moldovan border policemen in overseeing border crossing procedures and managing the flow of refugees.
  • NARRATIVES: 1. 40% of the Republic of Moldova will be controlled by foreign policemen. 2. The presence of European law enforcement agents is breaching the neutrality of the Republic of Moldova.
  • PURPOSE: The narratives are designed to accuse the West of breaching the neutrality of the Republic of Moldova, as well as the Government in Chișinău of handing over control of its territory to external forces.
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