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News 08 Jan 15

Iohannis Pencils in Visit to Moldova

Romanian President to lend an encouraging hand to pro-European parties after their narrow win in Moldovan elections.

BIRN
London

Romania’s new President, Klaus Iohannis, has designated neighbouring Moldova as the site of his first official foreign visit on 22- 23 January.

The President is also due to visit Brussels, followed by trips to France and Germany, possibly in February, although the dates for these visits have not been decided.

In Moldova, Iohannis will meet his counterpart, Nicolae Timofti, and the country’s future prime minister, if a new government has been formed by then.

Moldova’s three main pro-European parties are still locked in talks on forming a new coalition government following their narrow win over pro-Russian parties in parliamentary elections last year. The Liberal Democratic Party, Democratic Party and Liberal Party won a combined total of just over 45 per cent of the vote in the November 30 poll.

The apparent, if narrow, victory of pro-European political parties in the Moldovan elections has drawn support from Romanian politicians on both sides of the political divide.

As an EU member state, Romania strongly supports the European integration of Moldova, which once formed part of the old Kingdom of Romania. Moreover, Romanians and most Moldovans speak practically the same language.

Some Romanians still see the two peoples as one as well. Former Romanian President Traian Basescu has said that the union of the Romanian nation in a single state remains an ideal.

Iohannis, who replaced Basescu on 21 December, has long expressed his support for Moldova’s European integration.

On the last day of the election campaign in Moldova, Iohannis delivered a speech in the capital, Chisinau, where he urged voters to choose a European future, adding that no country was more important for Romania than Moldova.

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