CHISINAU, 20 September 2012 - The Representative of the Irish Chair-in-Office of the OSCE, Minister for European Affairs Lucinda Creighton, visiting Moldova today emphasized the need to maintain momentum in the negotiations on a political settlement of the Transdniestrian conflict.
In Chisinau she met Moldova’s President Nicolae Timofti, Prime Minister Vlad Filat, Deputy Prime Minister for Reintegration Eugene Carpov and Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration Iurie Leanca. Today she also traveled to Tiraspol to meet Transdniestrian chief negotiator Nina Shtanski.
“I am encouraged by the progress we have seen this year, notably the agreement on the principles and procedures for the conduct of negotiations, and on the agenda for the process,” said Creighton. “We have seen some positive developments on the ground as well, including the re-opening of rail freight traffic through Transdniestria and the disposal of radioactive waste."
Welcoming the recent agreement to intensify dialogue on human rights issues as well as to establish a joint forum for dialogue with civil society and media from both sides, Creighton underlined that these achievements were possible thanks to the sides’ political will and positive approach towards reaching a consensus.
“With this positive and constructive approach there could also be progress on issues concerning freedom of movement and resolution of problems facing Moldovan-administered schools in Transdniestria,” she said. “In both my roles representing the OSCE Chairmanship and the incoming EU Presidency I urge the sides to agree on the re-opening of the Gura Bicului bridge for vehicle traffic. This bridge was renovated by the EU more than 10 years ago and it is high time that this important connection between both banks of the river is restored.”
During her visit Creighton stressed the important work done by the OSCE Mission to Moldova in facilitating the negotiations in the 5+2 format and building confidence between the sides.
The 5+2 process towards a Transdniestrian settlement includes the representatives of the sides, mediators and observers in the negotiation process – Moldova, Transdniestria, the OSCE, the Russian Federation, Ukraine, the US and the EU.