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Summary: 16 April 2009, Brussels – Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) called for further diplomatic efforts to restore calm in Moldova, which is in the throes of a political crisis following the contested parliamentary election of 5 April. They also gave assurances of solidarity to Romanian foreign minister Cristian Diaconescu, who made an analysis of the situation at an extraordinary meeting of the European Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee and the Delegation for relations with Moldova.
"The way the situation evolves will depend on our involvement in the region", said Jacek Saryusz-Wolski (EPP-ED, PL), chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, which Parliament decided to convene for an extraordinary meeting as it had done for the gas crisis in January.
At its Strasbourg plenary session next week, Parliament is also due to debate the political crisis in Moldova (on Thursday) and adopt a resolution (on Friday), said Mr Saryusz-Wolski.
Relations between Romania and Moldova
"We will always show solidarity with Romania as this country is a member of the European Union", Mr Saryusz-Wolski told the Romanian minister.
For his part, Mr Diaconescu described as "utterly unfounded" and "absurd" the accusations made by the President of Moldova, Vladimir Voronin, who has said that Romania was behind the rioting that followed the announcement of the election results ten days ago.
The minister argued that Romania had been "very moderate" and said it remained "open to a rapprochement" with Moldova, despite the introduction of visa requirements for Romanian citizens and the arrest and expulsion of 24 Romanian journalists from Moldovan territory. "These measures should produce a coordinated condemnation from the EU", he added.
"Moldova must take part in the summit to launch the Eastern Partnership" scheduled for 7 May, said Mr Saryusz-Wolski in response to remarks by President Voronin, who has stated that his country might not take part in this enhanced partnership policy which is about to be launched by the EU.
"Real progress" was observed by comparison with the previous election in 2005, according to Marianne Mikko (PES, EE), who chairs the EP Delegation for relations with Moldova and led the recent EP election monitoring mission to the country.
Nevertheless she pointed the finger at the "preferential treatment" granted by public broadcasting services to the ruling communists. "No proof of fraud was found but everything seemed to work too smoothly on election day", she said.
The Moldovan opposition's objections to a recount - on the grounds that this would divert attention from irregularities linked to the constitution of electoral lists - were supported by Marian-Jean Marinescu (EPP-ED, RO) and Laima Liucija Andrikienė (EPP-ED, LT) and others.