Foreign Minister of Transnistria, Nina Shtanski – Transnistria wants to follow in the footsteps of Crimea


Foreign Minister of Transnistria, Nina Shtanski

Video published on July 12, 2014

June 1, 2015

Nina Shtanski, Foreign Minister of Transnistria


Translated by Kristina Rus

Nina Shtanski: We are inspired by the decision taken by Russian Federation [regarding Crimea – KR], here in Transnistria we are happy that Crimea has reunited with Russian Federation. I am sure that this step will become a good impetus for the development of Russian Federation. 

We must point out the strategic, legal, economic, informational impeccability which accompanied the execution of this decision.

Of course, the arguments used to reunify Crimea and Russia correlate with those arguments, appealed by Transnistria. These are historical, legal factors, those factors, which stemmed from the unregulated [and unfair – KR] break up of the USSR, the right of people for self-determination, which is an integral part of the entire modern legal system, and modern international legal precedents.

We must understand, that Transnistria has proved its right to be an independent state. For 23 years we have conducted full control of our territory, constitutional territory of Transnistria, effective system of state governance. The state fulfills its social obligations before the population, we have our own monetary-credit system – everything speaks for Transnistria being an accomplished independent state. And we must consider, that unlike many other states, including the smaller ones, we are in a constant state of blockade, under which we are surviving, and it is hard to talk about development under these conditions.

However, Transnistria is de facto a sovereign state, it’s independence has been decided by its people.

The will of the people, spoken at a referendum in 2006, held here, speaks that people living here consider themselves a part of the Russian world, a part of Russia, and they want to reunite with Russia.

Since 2006 we have been consistently following this course, and we hope that the will of the people will be heard.

For us it is important to get a reliable logistical connection with Russian Federation. In 1997 a memorandum was signed about a normalization of relationship between Transnistria and Moldova, which sealed the right of Transnistria to conduct sovereign foreign economic activity.

It means that we are able and must conduct barrier-free transit through Ukraine. This means our transport infrastructure must be unblocked. Transport connection must be established, today it is blocked – river, land and air.

All these issues must be resolved.

I would like to point out, that today, if we look at global political processes, we see that geographical, territorial factor is hardly primary. Much more important is a humanitarian sphere, various cross-national relationships. 

We must understand that many subjects of Russian Federation are much more removed from Moscow, then Transnistria.

Transnistria is much more poorly represented in the information space, we have fewer capabilities, then our opponents. And information war is one of the sides of our conflict.

For many years many negative cliches have been spread about Transnistria. We are well known in the Western internet space as a black hole, contraband hub, and other information, very far from truth. 

We would like to be visited by more media representatives and experts, who would like to see the situation firsthand and make their own conclusions. Here in Transnistria there is much to see, we have very hospitable people, we have a great land, with many points of interest, and fortunately we have been getting more tourists.

Our political course – is integration into a Eurasian space, and we hope that our efforts will allow us to achieve our main goal – to reunify with Russian Federation.

After renewing a negotiation process with Molodva in 2011, after a 6 year long pause, we have identified our joint priority – social-economic coordination. This is the area which unfortunately accumulated a large number of problems, which need solutions in the shortest time possible.

Unfortunately, negotiations are not as productive, as we would like them to be. We are very critical about the results. But on this background, unfortunately, we see new problems, new sanctions, new blockade measures.  

It’s difficult to understand what’s the strategic goal of these efforts, because it would seem that after 23 years we had proved that it is counter-productive to pressure us. We must establish good pragmatic neighborly relations. Because under conditions of confrontation, we can hardly achieve any goals.

The Moldovan side makes controversial statements regarding many of our enterprises. 

But we have to understand that there are obligations, including bilateral.

Transnistrian enterprises will continue to develop and operate, and the state will undertake all efforts to create normal conditions of work, despite the goals of Moldovan republic, and we will continue our dialog with international partners.

I think the time has shown that it is fruitless to lay claims on any of our Transnistrian enterprises [by the Moldovan side – KR]. 

KR: Unfortunately the reason why neighborly relations of Transnistria with its neighbors have been hardly neighborly is because Transnistria and its neighbors – Moldova and Ukraine (which have the same masters) – have very different goals. For Transnistria – it’s economic development, peace and good relations with neighbors, and for the masters of Moldova and Ukraine it’s – stifling the economic growth of Transnistria and ultimately elimination of this Russian outpost from the region, which is what we are watching being implemented today. The new threats before Transnistria will only speed up the process of its reunification with Russia. Transnistria has much more in common with Crimea, then a more complex and sizeable region, like Donbass, as an annexation canditate, and judging by Putin’s quick reaction in Crimea, I think we will witness some more feats of Putin’s diplomacy in the near future.                         

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