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Russia will make military presence in Transnistria permanentUpdated: 30-05-2010 | Regional Europe

Moldova might have to bear some "side effects" after Romania's approval to host elements of the US anti-missile defense system on its territory, David Kramer, former deputy secretary for European and Eurasian problems in the US Department of State, told Radio Liberty on Thursday. He does not exclude the possibility that Russia used as argument the installation of US missiles in Romania to maintain its military presence in Transnistria. Transnistria too could use this pretext, the former diplomat considers.

As for the Transnistria difference, the US can only insist that the negotiation process in the five plus two format (Moldova, Transnistria, Russia, Ukraine, OSCE plus EU and USA as observers) should resume. Together with the European partners they could also ask at those negotiations the withdrawal of Russian troops from Transnistria.

Kramer, now at expert with the German Marshall Fund, criticized the actions of the Obama administration, too busy to re-launch relations with Russia, to the detriment of the other states in the area. That applies to a small extent to Moldova, compared to countries in the Caucasus or Ukraine. As for Moldova, the policy of the American administration is laudable since it backs the new government in the Millennium Challenge program. Kramer declared.

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