23 may, 2019

Moldova may well be subjected to a 'shock therapy' designed by the still mighty Democratic Party, believes Sergey Cheban, a regular author of the Regional Trends Analytics.

In his opinion, the situation in Moldova after the parliamentary elections is almost hopeless. Mutual distrust of Socialists and the leaders of right-wing parties led to "an absurd situation, when against the background of seemingly obvious same main goal for both political formations - the liberation of power from usurpation by oligarchic structures - each party feared to agree 'wrong' and lose important positions, influence or popularity".

The danger in the situation, according to Cheban, is the growing temptation among some politicians to cut the Gordian knot: to provoke a political and even economic crisis to play the 'salvation of the nation' against its background. According to the expert, the Prime Minister's ambitions of Vlad Plahotniuc directly show that authors of this plan are the leaders of the Democratic Party. "Prices for some food and fuel are rising in Moldova. In a striking way, these processes coincide with the approaching threat of early parliamentary elections.

"One never knows, tomorrow the main trump card in the fight against Plahotniuc - the cessation of macro-financial assistance by the EU - will be his trump card. Plahotniuc's media resources will easily accuse the ACUM bloc and the PSRM of prolonging the political crisis and bringing the country to early elections, which will again postpone European funding for an indefinite period," Cheban said.

In his words, the government and all the institutions of power remain controlled by Plahotniuc, and now almost nothing prevents the Democratic Party from dramatizing the economic crisis and turning people against the 'lost in meetings' socialists and right-wingers.

"In these circumstances, the early elections will be held under very different banners: it can be expected that Plahotniuc's technologists will invent new saving projects for Moldova like "good roads" and "the first house". The author of these initiatives, of course, will be the leader of the PDM. Together with harsh criticism of opponents, this strategy could lead to Democrats enhancing their standing. In fact, Plahotniuc will try to convince the residents of Moldova that the country should be ruled by someone who can cope with the problems and can manage the power," the expert notes.

In his opinion, this is a very bad scenario, and it should be understood that it has beneficiaries not only in Moldova. The artificial crisis, which Plahotniuc will have to 'fight', plays into the hands of Washington.

"First, the main oligarch of Moldova is a more or less reliable and predictable partner for the US. Second, the growing tension in Moldova will allow the White House to further exacerbate the problem of Russian arms depots on the Left Bank of the Dniester river in unrecognized Transnistria. Criticism of the pro-Russian President of Moldova, who may be called a 'stakeholder' in the early elections and the crisis is an obvious reason for new accusations against Moscow and demands to tighten policy against the Russian presence in Transnistria," the analyst suggests.

In his words, "One should understand that today the Party of Socialists and the ACUM bloc have almost the last chance to avoid serious shocks in the second half of the year. Otherwise, it is hoped that the leaders of these major political forces have a plan B, which will not allow Plahotniuc to regain power".

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