Moscow, 18 November 2003 (RFE/RL) -- Moldovan President Vladimir Voronin welcomed today a plan proposed by Russia to settle the dispute between Moldova and its breakaway region of Transdniester. It calls for Moldova to become a demilitarized federation in which Transdniester would have special status. The federation would recognize Russian and Romanian as official languages. The plan calls for the country to vote on a new constitution in October 2004.
Russia presented the plan yesterday to Moldova and Transdniester and to fellow mediators Ukraine and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.
Russian-speaking Transdniester declared independence from then-Soviet Moldova in 1990. Moldovan forces and separatists fought a short war in 1992 that ended when Russian troops imposed a truce.
The two sides have yet to reach an agreement on the status of the region, where some 2,500 Russian soldiers are still based.