CHISINAU -- A small Moldovan political party has begun a petition campaign in support of the country joining a Russia-led customs union.
Igor Dodon, the leader of the Party of Socialists in the Republic of Moldova, says he hopes to gather enough signatures nationwide to force a referendum on whether Moldova should continue its current path of closer ties to the European Union or seek to join the Customs Union of Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan.
Dodon -- whose party is an offshoot of Moldova's Communist Party -- told RFE/RL that he wanted the Moldovan government to postpone its signing of an EU Association Agreement, scheduled for June.
He said Russia's annexation of Crimea should not keep Moldova from joining the Customs Union.
In Brussels, Romanian Member of the European Parliament Monica Macovei said signing the Association Agreement would put Moldova inside the EU security zone.
With reporting by ITAR-TASS and Interfax