Live Updates: Moscow warns Ukraine will ‘separate’ if West continues to support Kyiv
The Moldovan president said on Tuesday that the explosions in Russian-backed breakaway regions were the work of forces seeking to create instability.
Maia Sandu’s office made the statement in a statement after the president, seen as a pro-Western figure, held a meeting with her security council.
Although the statement made no connection between the explosions and the Russian invasion of neighboring Ukraine, an adviser to the Ukrainian president on Tuesday called for cooperation between the two countries.
Russia is seeking to capture a strip of the Ukrainian coast leading to Moldova and the breakaway region of Transnistria.
Sandu spoke amid growing fears that two days of explosions in Transnistria, where Russia has more than 1,000 troops, could drag the region into Moscow’s war against Ukraine.
“What is happening in the past 24 hours in the Transnistria region is an escalation of tensions,” Sandu said.
On Monday, a rocket-propelled grenade was used against the headquarters of the Russian-backed separatists’ security services in Tiraspol, the administrative center of Transnistria. On Tuesday, explosions took place at a regional military unit and telecommunications towers used to broadcast Russian radio.
“The Moldovan authorities are carefully and vigilantly following the events unfolding in the territory controlled by the Tiraspol regime,” Sandu said.
Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser in the office of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, echoed Sandu’s concerns.
“Russia wants to destabilize the Transnistrian region,” he tweeted, adding that Ukraine and Sandu’s government in Chisinau had common interests.
“If Ukraine falls, Russian troops will be at the gates of Chisinau,” he wrote, adding that the countries should work “as a team.”
Sandu’s statement said there were “tensions” in Transnistria and forces interested in “destabilizing” the situation there.
“This makes the region of Transnistria vulnerable and poses risks for the Republic of Moldova,” she said, adding that she condemned “any challenge and any attempt to draw the Republic of Moldova into actions that could jeopardize peace in the country”.
Moldova, which is mostly Romanian-speaking, lost control of Transnistria in a brief war in the early 1990s. The territory’s pro-Russian authorities are supported by the Russian garrison.