Zelensky accuses Russia of trying to destabilise Moldova
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Ukrainian commander in-chief Zaluzhny said two Russian missiles crossed Moldova and Romania’s airspace on their way to Ukraine on Friday morning.
Breaking the news on Telegram, he wrote: “Today, February 10, at 10:18 am, two Russian Kalibr cruise missiles crossed the State border of Ukraine with the Republic of Moldova. At approximately 10:33 am, these missiles crossed Romanian airspace. After that, they again entered the airspace of Ukraine.”
Responding to the move, Moldova’s Defence said: “The Ministry of Defence, together with the responsible structures of the country, is closely monitoring the situation in the region and strongly condemns the violation of the airspace of the Republic of Moldova.
It comes as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Thursday that his country has intercepted plans by Russian secret services to destroy Moldova, and Moldovan intelligence confirmed the claim.
Speaking to European Union leaders in Brussels, Zelensky said he recently told Moldovan President Maia Sandu about the alleged scheme.
He said: “I have informed her that we have intercepted the plan of the destruction of Moldova by the Russian intelligence.”
He said the documents showed “who, when and how” the plan would “break the democracy of Moldova and establish control over Moldova.”
Zelensky said the plan was very similar to the one devised by Russia to take over Ukraine. He added that he did not know whether Moscow ultimately ordered the plan to be carried out.
After Zelensky’s comments, Moldova’s Intelligence and Security Service released a statement confirming it has received “respective information from our Ukrainian partners” and said it has also identified “subversive activities, aimed to undermine the Republic of Moldova, destabilise and violate public order.”
The statement read: “At the moment, we cannot provide more details as there is a risk of jeopardising various ongoing operational activities.”
They added that all of Moldova’s state institutions “are working at full capacity and will not allow these challenges to happen.”
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov charged last week that the West was considering turning Moldova into “another Ukraine.”
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He alleged that the West backed the 2020 election of the pro-Western Sandu, claiming that she is eager to take the country into NATO, merge Moldova with Romania and “practically is ready for anything.”
In December, Moldova’s national intelligence agency warned that Russia could launch a new offensive this year with the aim of creating a land corridor through southern Ukraine to Moldova’s Moscow-backed breakaway region of Transnistria.
Transnistria broke away after a 1992 civil war but is not recognised by most countries. It extends roughly 400 kilometres (250 miles) from the eastern bank of the Dniester River to the country’s border with Ukraine.
Russia has about 1,500 troops nominally as “peacekeepers” in the breakaway region.
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