Moldova’s Constitutional Court has confirmed the outcome of the country’s February 24 parliamentary elections, rejecting an appeal by some opposition parties to invalidate the results in several constituencies.
The court on March 9 said the Socialist Party will hold 35 seats in the 101-member parliament.
The current ruling Democratic Party will get 30 mandates, while the ACUM bloc will have 26. The conservative Shor Party will get seven seats, and three independents will also be included.
Potential coalitions are still uncertain. If the next parliament fails to form a governing coalition within 45 days after the election results, the president dissolves the legislature and calls new elections.
Igor Dodon, who headed the pro-Russia Socialist Party until he became president, is a vocal supporter of closer ties with Moscow and a staunch ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
ACUM is considered pro-European Union. The Democrats are considered pro-West but have looked to balance East-West relations.
Chisinau's relations with Russia deteriorated after Moldova signed an association agreement with the EU in 2014. Russia then placed an embargo on some Moldovan goods. Now, 70 percent of Moldovan exports head to the EU.
Tensions are also exacerbated by the situation in Moldova’s Transdniester region.
The mainly Russian-speaking region declared independence from Moldova in 1990 over fears that Chisinau would seek reunification with neighboring Romania. Most of Moldova was part of Romania in the period between World War I and World War II.
Moldovan forces and Moscow-backed Transdniester fighters fought a short but bloody war in 1992.
The conflict ended with a cease-fire agreement after Russian troops in the region intervened on the side of the separatists.
Some 1,400 Russian troops remain in Transdniester guarding Soviet-era arms depots, and Moscow has resisted numerous calls over the years to withdraw its troops.