The pro-European Sandu, in the lead in the presidential elections of Moldova

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The struggle between European forces y prussian that for years marks the political life of Moldova, a small ex-Soviet republic of 3.5 million inhabitants Y speaks romanian, will live a new assault within two weeks, when the second round of the presidential elections is held. After the first round of the elections, held this Sunday, Maia Sandu, the aspiring supporter of bringing the country closer to the EU, led the vote count, with a 36.1% of supports, closely followed, less than four points away, by the outgoing head of state, the pro-Russian Igor Dodon. Neither of the two contenders managed to overcome the barrier of the half of the votes cast necessary to be proclaimed the winner.

“It is an extraordinary mobilization; thank you,” Sandu declared as soon as he learned the data of the count. With these words, this Harvard-educated economist, who in the past worked for the world Bank, referred to the vote from the diaspora of Romanian citizens abroad, whose massive support had allowed him to take the lead. Sandu led a coalition government last year, although it was shot down within a few months by a motion of censure. Among the main points of its political program is a rapprochement with the EU, an institution from which it intends to obtain greater financial support.

The Transdnistrian conflict

Dodon, for his part, has promised to end the conflict in Transnistria, a small Russian-speaking territory along the border with Ukraine that during the process of extinction of the Soviet Union declared his Moldavian independence, a movement that only has been recognized by three states which in turn suffer from an international presence and are not even part of the UN. In addition, he has been outraged and described as “interference” in the internal affairs of his country the messages of encouragement that his opponent has received from European leaders, such as the Minister of Defense of Germany, Anegret Kaumpf-Karrenbauer, or the former President of the European Council, Donald Tusk.

Like what has happened during the summer in Belarus, the Kremlin watches events in Modavia closely. Sergei Naryshkin, director of Foreign Intelligence Service (SVU) has accused the United States of instigating protests against Dodon, an accusation very similar to the one it made in the summer months, when it implicated the same country in the organization of demonstrations against the Belarusian President Aleksándr Lukashenko in Minsk, also after the presidential elections in August.

The second round will undoubtedly take place in an atmosphere of tension Y political polarization. The European Sandu has denounced electoral manipulation in the first round and has called on his supporters to stay alert. “The violations affected the electoral results; that is why it is important that we protect each vote of those who are in power and abuse their position,” he proclaimed.

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