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Moldovan President Won't Rule Out Unification With Romania


Mihai Ghimpu

Mihai Ghimpu

CHISINAU -- Moldovan parliament speaker and acting President Mihai Ghimpu says nobody will be able to stop the reunification of Moldova with Romania "if people will push" for it, RFE/RL's Moldovan Service reports.

Ghimpu told RFE/RL today that although unification is not a goal of the governing Alliance for European Integration, "nobody can say what will happen tomorrow. Who could predict the earthquake in Chile?"

He had earlier told Russian media that reunification will never happen.

Ghimpu added that "there are things that are sorted out only by time and society. If [the Moldovan] people wish for reunification, nobody will stop them, be it Ghimpu, [former Moldovan President Vladimir] Voronin, [Russian Prime Minister Vladimir] Putin, or [U.S. Secretary of State Hillary] Clinton."

Ghimpu said he expected Democratic Party leader Marian Lupu, the former Communist Party speaker of parliament who defected, to be elected the next president by the end of the year either in a popular vote or by the parliament.

The Alliance for European Integration -- which is made up of four pro-Western parties -- won the repeat general election by a slim margin last summer after violent street protests against the victory of the ruling Communists in a disputed ballot in early April.

The pro-Western alliance did not manage to garner the required three-fifths vote in parliament to elect a new president to succeed Voronin.

The governing coalition is preparing to change the procedure for electing a president in order to avoid new general elections. The constitutional amendments are being coordinated with the Council of Europe's Venice Commission.
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