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Russia Alleges 'Gross Violations' in Moldovan Election Campaign

Russia has alleged that Moldova's November 30 parliamentary election was marred by "gross violations" during the campaign.

Pro-EU parties won a majority of parliament seats in the election in the former Soviet republic, a neighbor of Ukraine and a focus of rivalry between Moscow and the European Union.

OSCE monitors said the election had been well-run but said a last-minute decision to exclude the Patria (Homeland) party, run by a Russian businessman, on the grounds that it had been funded from abroad, "raised questions about the timing and circumstances."

In a statement on December 3, the Russian Foreign Ministry suggested the monitors' conclusions about the "transparent and democratic character" of the election were undermined by what the ministry said were "gross violations allowed in the preparations and the conduct of the election process."

Moldova's Socialist Party, which favors joining a Russia-led economic bloc rather than moving towards the EU, won the most votes of any single party.

The Russian ministry said the results showed many Moldovans want deeper ties with Moscow.

With reporting by Reuters
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