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Moldova Ends Negotiations With Renegade Region

27 August 2004 -- Moldovan President Vladimir Voronin announced today he has ended reunification negotiations with the breakaway Transdniester region.

Voronin, in a major foreign-policy speech, said that in future his government will speak only with "those, whom Tiraspol obeys in the most direct way."

Voronin was apparently referring to Russia and Ukraine, the countries Moldova accuses of supporting the breakaway region.

"We cannot discredit ourselves anymore by negotiating the fate of a reunified Moldova with a clique of imposters, whose political program is limited only to exploiting the feelings of the people who went through the 1992 events [in the Transdniester region]," Voronin said.

The president criticized the Transdniester leadership, saying the region had become a police state with no respect for its inhabitants' welfare and human rights.

Voronin has repeatedly described the reunification of the two sides as his most important foreign policy goal.

Mostly Russian-speaking Transdniester achieved de-facto independence from Moldova after a war in 1992.