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Former Romanian President Becomes Moldovan Citizen, Pushes EU Ties

Former Romanian President Traian Basescu became a Moldovan citizen on November 3.

The former president of Romania became a Moldovan citizen on November 3 and said he may get politically involved there.

Traian Basescu and his wife, Maria, were given citizenship after taking an oath at the Moldovan Embassy in Bucharest. Moldova was part of Romania until 1940.

As Romania's president from 2004 to 2014, Basescu promoted closer ties with Moldova and said the neighboring countries should reunite. Hundreds of thousands of Moldovans became eligible for Romanian citizenship during his presidency.

Basescu is running for the Senate in Romania's December 11 parliamentary elections.

"I have to admit, I also have political options in Moldova," he said, declining to elaborate.

Basescu strongly supports Moldova moving closer to the European Union and said that "Romania has to provide all possible assistance in that."

"I'm convinced that Moldova has one way to go...toward the West...toward the EU and why not...toward Romania if Moldovan citizens want it that way?" he said.

Moldova is scheduled to hold a presidential runoff on November 13. The leading candidate, who favors closer ties with Russia, is running against an ex-World Bank economist who wants to move closer to Europe.

Based on reporting by AP and Interfax