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Disinformation:

DISINFORMATION: “If Moldova joins the group of countries that introduced sanctions against the Republic of Belarus, each of its citizens will suffer the consequences”.

Disinformation

Socialist MP Petru Burduja, a close associate of party leader, Igor Dodon, claims that a potential alignment of the Republic of Moldova to the regime of sanctions imposed against Belarus would seriously impact the economy and the country’s population, due to the close economic ties between the two states. Statistics show, however, that trade with Belarus accounts for approximately 2% of the total volume of Moldova’s external trade.

NEWS: “The national economy, the business sector and the citizens will pay the price if the Republic of Moldova joins the list of countries that apply sanctions to the Republic of Belarus. The president of Parliament’s economic, budget and finance committee, PSRM MP Petru Burduja, today made an appeal to the head of state, Maia Sandu, asking her not to involve our country in this international geopolitical game”, several media outlets in the Republic of Moldova have quoted Petru Burudja as saying.

The Moldovan MP said Moldova and Belarus enjoy a fruitful economic partnership. Belarus is Moldova’s 9th largest trade partner. The annual volume of two-way trade varies between 180 million and 215 million dollars. Moldova exports to Belarus wine and fresh grapes, ethanol, corn, processed and canned vegetables, fruit juices, apricots, cherries, sour cherries, peaches, medicines and furniture. Belarus exports to Moldova firewood, petrol oils, agricultural technology, ceramic plates, etc. At the same time, the Chișinău City Hall struck a partnership for opening an assembly plant for trolleybus imported from Belarus. Moreover, the City Hall also signed an agreement with a Minsk-based company for the delivery of 100 new buses.

“We call on president Maia Sandu and her overseers to take urgent action in order to prevent the Republic of Moldova from being dragged into this international scandal. Her intervention would save Moldova’s farmers, who import technology from Belarus and export their products to this country. In case Moldova aligns itself with the big geopolitical players, each citizen will suffer the consequences”, MP Burduja said.

Reality

NARRATIVES: 1. The economy of the Republic of Moldova and its external trade depend very much on maintaining good relations with Belarus. 2. The Republic of Moldova would have a lot to lose if it joined the regime of sanctions imposed on Minsk in response  to serious violations of human rights and democratic standards.

BACKGROUND: There are numerous left-wing politicians in the Republic of Moldova who support and speak highly of Alexander Lukashenko’s dictatorship in Minsk. Among them is also the leader of the Party of Socialists in the Republic of Moldova – PSRM (of which Petru Burduja is also a member), former president Igor Dodon, an advocate of strengthening relations with Moscow and bringing the Republic of Moldova closer to the Eurasian Union. In early May, Dodon paid a visit to Minsk, accompanied by Parliament Speaker, Zinaida Greaceanyi (PSRM). During his meeting with president Alexander Lukashenko, Igor Dodon praised the way Minsk authorities repressed the street protests that followed the election of August, 2020, seeing as an example worthy of following by the Republic of Moldova as well.

In April, 2009, Chișinău also saw a series of violent protests following accusations over defrauding the parliamentary election. At the time, the Police made hundreds of arrests. People claimed they were tortured while being detained, and the communist regime, with Vladimir Voronin acting as president and Zinaida Greceanyi as Prime Minister, accused external forces, Romania first and foremost, of instigating protesters. Following the early parliamentary election, the Communist Party lost the power.

Igor Dodon, who was first deputy Prime Minister back in 2009, has now forged an election alliance with the Communist Party led by Voronin ahead of the July 11 early parliamentary election. In 2011, Dodon “betrayed” Voronin by switching sides to the Party of Socialists, together with Zinaida Greceanyi. One of the main messages promoted by the new alliance is that the Republic of Moldova risks losing its sovereignty and ending up under Western control.

PURPOSE: To generate unrest in the Republic of Moldova over the possible adoption of sanctions by Moldova against Belarus. (indirectly) To reiterate support for the Minsk regime, something which Igor Dodon has expressed on a number of occasions and which suits the Kremlin.

WHY THE NARRATIVES ARE FALSE: In fact, the share of Moldova’s trade with Belarus accounts for a little over 2% of total trade.

Economic expert with the “Viitorul” Institute for Development and Social Initiatives (IDIS), Veaceslav Ioniță, made public a study on this topic, which shows that the Republic of Moldova does not rely on imports from Belarus, while in terms of exports to Belarus, only wine products have a larger share, accounting for 20% of Moldova’s total exports.

GRAIN OF TRUTH: Belarus is Moldova’s 9th-largest trade partner, with a 2% share of total trade.

WHO STANDS TO BENEFIT: The Party of Socialists, Moscow, the regime in Minsk.

OFFICIAL REACTIONS: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration in Chișinău issued a press release on May 24, after the diversion of the Ryanair flight traveling from Athens to Vilnius and the arrest of opposition journalist Roman Protasevich, encouraging members of the international community to abide by the standards and principles of international law.

 

  • Publication / Media:
    www.breakingnews.md
  • Date of publication:
    27/05/2021
  • Language / Target audience:
    Representatives of the business sector, particularly people who do business with companies in Belarus, PSRM voters, Eurosceptics
  • Amplification:
    Most media outlets affiliated to PSRM.
  • Key narrative:
    The citizens and economy of the Republic of Moldova will suffer the consequences of the country’s possible alignment to the regime of sanctions against Belarus.
Cornel Ciobanu

31 May 2021
Cornel Ciobanu

9 minutes read
  • Socialist MP Petru Burduja, a close associate of party leader, Igor Dodon, claims that a potential alignment of the Republic of Moldova to the regime of sanctions imposed against Belarus would seriously impact the economy and the country’s population, due to the close economic ties between the two states. Statistics show, however, that trade with Belarus accounts for approximately 2% of the total volume of Moldova’s external trade.
  • NARRATIVES: 1. The economy of the Republic of Moldova and its external trade depend very much on maintaining good relations with Belarus. 2. The Republic of Moldova would have a lot to lose if it joined the regime of sanctions imposed on Minsk in response to serious violations of human rights and democratic standards.
  • PURPOSE: To generate unrest in the Republic of Moldova over the possible adoption of sanctions by Moldova against Belarus. (indirectly) To reiterate support for the Minsk regime, something which Igor Dodon has expressed on a number of occasions and which suits the Kremlin.
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