ISSN 2330-717X

Breakaway Moldovan Region Of Transnistria Gets New PM

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By Madalin Necsutu

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The separatist leader in Transnistria Vadim Krasnoselsky on Friday said he was proposing Alexander Rosenberg, the former Minister of Agriculture, as Prime Minister, after Alexander Martinov was fired on Thursday.

Appointing Rosenberg is seen as a formality as Ktrasnoselsky holds full power in the breakaway Russian-backed region. Rosenberg is considered a technocrat close to the Sheriff holding company that runs the separatist region de facto politically and economically.

Sheriff holding is owned by local oligarchs Viktor Gushan and Ylia Kazmalii, two former Soviet intelligence officers.

The new PM is an electrical and agricultural engineer and previously held several positions in the separatist administration in Tiraspol. In January 2022, he was appointed Minister of Agriculture.

Rosenberg ran the Tiraspol bakery for ten years before becoming Minister of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

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A political analyst in Chisinau, Anatol Taranu, told BIRN that the governmental shift is just a small local affair.

“Rosenberg has the vocation of a technocrat rather than a politician. This it is an internal movement within the Sheriff group, with no real connotations for the issue of Transnistrian conflict settlement,” he said.

Security expert Ion Leahu told BIRN that Krasnoselski’s reshuffles are characteristic of a dictatorial regime that periodically changes people “so they do not forget who the boss is”.

Since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, several explosions have rocked the breakaway region. Tiraspol has blamed both Ukraine and Moldova. Moldovan officials have blamed the explosions in Transnistria on local political rivalries.

Experts in Chisinau say the oligarchs running Sheriff are not in favour of joining the war in Ukraine, near the breakaway region, as it is bad for business.

However, they also say the force structures in Transnistria are fully controlled on the top level by FSB officers who listen to Moscow’s orders and act accordingly.

Balkan Insight

The Balkan Insight (fornerkt the Balkin Investigative Reporting Network, BIRN) is a close group of editors and trainers that enables journalists in the region to produce in-depth analytical and investigative journalism on complex political, economic and social themes. BIRN emerged from the Balkan programme of the Institute for War & Peace Reporting, IWPR, in 2005. The original IWPR Balkans team was mandated to localise that programme and make it sustainable, in light of changing realities in the region and the maturity of the IWPR intervention. Since then, its work in publishing, media training and public debate activities has become synonymous with quality, reliability and impartiality. A fully-independent and local network, it is now developing as an efficient and self-sustainable regional institution to enhance the capacity for journalism that pushes for public debate on European-oriented political and economic reform.

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