Publication: Monitor Volume: 2 Issue: 53

In a statement issued March 16, Moldova’s Foreign Ministry recalled that the country had proclaimed its independence before the formal dissolution of the USSR and that its independence had since been universally recognized. Moldova seeks economic cooperation with the CIS, but rules out political-military cooperation with it, the document said. Describing the Duma’s action as "a direct encroachment on Moldova’s independence and sovereignty" and "fraught with the risk of generating new tensions and conflict hotbeds," the Foreign Ministry "condemned the Duma’s resolutions and considered them legally null and void." At a news conference hours afterward, President Mircea Snegur termed the Duma’s resolutions "absurd" and told a news conference that the Duma advised its deputies "to try and realize what world and which year they live in." By contrast Vladimir Voronin, the leader of Moldova’s Party of Communists (based mainly in the nonindigenous population and making a strong political comeback recently) welcomed the prospect of a reborn Union. At a news conference marking the fifth anniversary of the 1991 referendum (which Moldova boycotted), Voronin argued that countries entering a new union would maintain their state independence and their own governments. (Basapress, Flux, March 15 &16)