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Moldovan authorities start negotiations with demonstrators after Wednesday protests

The Moldovan authorities have agreed to meet the protest movement leaders. The talks are taking place at the presidential residence.

Igor Dodon, the leader of the Party of Socialists; Our Party's leader Renato Usatii and Platform DA (Dignity and Truth) leader Andrei Nastase are representing the demonstrators at talks that are under way in the presidential residence.

Thousands of protesters are picketing the building outside.

The Moldovan parliament on Wednesday approved the program and structure of a new government led by Pavel Filip by 57 votes out of 101.

The new premier had to announce the cabinet's structure and program from the hall because deputies from the Party of Socialists had blocked access to the central rostrum. They consider the new cabinet to be illegitimate and demand early elections. The vote took place amidst numerous opposition protests.

The Communist Party of Moldova and the Liberal Democratic Party of Moldova voted against the candidacy of Pavel Filip to the prime minister's post and his cabinet. They described the parliament's hasty vote as a "show".

The new Moldovan government was formed by a coalition comprising 56 out of 101 deputies. They include the factions of the Democratic Party of Moldova and the Liberal Party of Moldova that have 20 and 13 mandates, respectively, as well as 14 Communist deputies who quitted the Communist Party of Moldova in December last year and another nine former deputies of the Liberal Democratic Party of Moldova. Liberal Democrats used to form the nucleus of the previous ruling coalition called "Alliance for European Integration". Now, they have switched sides and joined the opposition.

The leaders of the left opposition parties — the Party of Socialists; the Our Party and the centre-right DA platform (Dignity and Truth) — called on their supporters to join a protest rally outside parliament.

The Moldovan opposition will build up peaceful pressure on the corrupt and oligarchic regime, which the United States and the European Union are imposing on the country, Igor Dodon, the leader of the Party of Socialists of Moldova who had taken thousands of his supporters to the streets outside the parliament building, told TASS.

"The corrupt oligarchic regime has seized the power in Moldova with the help of the United States and the European Union that brought to power and support the ruling pro-European coalition turning a blind eye to endemic corruption. Now, they are afraid of early elections, which, as opinion polls show, are going to bring pro-Russian parties to power," Dodon said. His party has the biggest parliamentary faction, which controls a quarter of seats in parliament and stands for the Eurasian vector of Moldova's development.

According to him, Victoria Nuland, the US Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, voiced support for the ruling coalition in Chisinau during a visit to Bucharest on January 18.

"After that, the parliament approved the new government in no time despite protests by the Socialists. They did not even discuss its programme or structure. It is lawless. We will not allow corrupt officials to stay in power. We are going to take tens of thousands of people to the streets tomorrow to demand the government's resignation," the politician said. He stressed that the Socialists had called on their supporters to be peaceful and not to clash with police.

[Source: Itar Tass, Chisinau, 21Jan16]

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