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Thursday, July 30, 2009

Moldova: Last Communist Govt. in Europe Falls

Europe’s only Communist government was toppled from power this week by a collection of pro-Western forces, after a bitter parliamentary election that both sides portrayed as crucial in determining the country’s future.

Officials from the winning four-party coalition hailed their victory in the July 29 contest. Together, they seized 53 of the legislature’s 101 seats, or some 50 percent of the vote.

Moldova matters little in U.S. foreign policy, but plays a role that outstrips its diminutive size — just over 4 million citizens — in European politics. It is viewed as a potential source of instability on Europe’s periphery and is wedged between two major players, Ukraine and Romania. Its breakaway region of Trans-Dniester — a “frozen conflict” in official parlance — is also a potential source of black market goods and narcotics, since it possesses no officially recognized borders.

Some commentators compared this election to other popular uprisings, the so-called “color revolutions,” in which questions about election returns eventually dislodged entrenched political elites.

link: Moldova remains calm, for now | GlobalPost


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