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Russia Cautions Moldova Over Transdniester

1 March 2005 -- Russia accused Moldova today of escalating political tensions over its separatist Transdniester region, a pro-Moscow enclave, ahead of forthcoming parliamentary elections.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the situation "around Transdniester is causing us serious concern."

It accused Moldovan authorities of "heightening tensions in the security zone, and of "preventing the carrying out of regular peacekeeping missions."

Simmering tensions over Transdniester have escalated ahead of parliamentary elections set for 6 March in the former Soviet republic.

Moldovan authorities claim that military activity has been increasing in the pro-Russia region ahead of the vote, although Moscow officials have said independent inspections had proved the region remained peaceful.

Transdniester broke away from Moldova in 1990 and the two sides fought a war in 1992.