Holding of free elections is main condition for reconnection with EU, opinion

The president of the Conflict Prevention & Early Warning Center Iulian Chifu said 2019 is expected to be very difficult for the Republic of Moldova. The foreign policy analyst considers the holding of free, fair and transparent elections without accidents like the removal of competitors or an annulment by courts is the main condition for the reconnection with the EU, IPN reports.

Iulian Chifu noted the Republic of Moldova distanced itself from the EU for a number of reasons. “I think the capacity to further do reforms and to fully engage in the European integration is the main thing and the related issues are every time probed. On the other hand, it should be clearly said: the European Union is a pragmatic player that will work with the Government of the Republic of Moldova regardless of its formula, depending on the limits and the assumed commitments,” the analyst stated in an interview for Radio Free Europe.

According to him, there will be extremely important work that the Republic of Moldova should do under the new Government so as to restore credibility and to reconnect itself to the EU and to assume relations, including financial ones, by returning to a bilaterally agreed program to rebuild confidence and ensure institutional reconstruction and to relaunch reforms. This does not mean that throughout the government period that ends on February 24, no important progress was made even compared with the periods when there were more supported statements in favor of coming closer to the EU and fewer deeds. So, the European Union notes in reports and does not deny the fact that Moldova took very important steps, at a certain moment being at the forefront of the Eastern Partnership states with Association Agreements. Currently it ranks third, but not because the other states advanced a lot, but because Moldova took substantial steps backward and this was noted in almost all the reports.

“The elections should take place without such administrative interference that always endanger the correctness and balance in the conduct of electoral processes and this is the first preoccupation of the Republic of Moldova on its way to the reconnection with the European Union,” noted Iulian Chifu.

The analyst said 2019 is regrettably a difficult year globally. It is a difficult year owing to the major changes that will be witnessed worldwide and to the unpredictability of major world leaders. It is a difficult year for the European Union as Romania will hold the presidency of the Council of the EU in the first half of the year and European Parliament elections will take place and also the Brexit will be held on March 29 and because of the large number of threats and upheavals inside the EU. In such a context, Moldova evidently cannot be in a very good situation. The elections of February 24, 2019 will greatly determine what Moldova will do this year.

“I refer here first of all to the way in which the country connects itself to the regional factors – the European Union, the relations with the Russian Federation and with Romania and Ukraine given that we already have one of the two factors – the President of the Republic of Moldova, who will continue holding office and who already has a declared, visible pro-Russia option that is even ostentatious in parts. It is very important to form the parliamentary majority for the government that will be created to be able to balance and maintain this tie with the European Union,” stated Iulian Chifu.

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