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Rome Conference on Transnistria

The Permanent Conference on Political Issues in the Framework of the Negotiation Process for the Settlement of Transnistria, which took place on 29 and 30 May in Rome, closed with a commitment to finalise all aspects of the “package of eight”. It makes 2018 a historic year for Chisinau and Tiraspol, said the OSCE Special Representative, Franco Frattini. The Rome Protocol was signed by all the Parties participating in the Conference in the 5+2 format (Moldova, Transnistria, the OSCE, Ukraine, the Russian Federation, the EU and the U.S. as observers). The Protocol outlines timelines and a roadmap to ensure the rapid finalisation of the eight priorities, which the Parties identified a year ago.

All the participants in the Conference acknowledged the commitment of the Parties in implementing the agreements signed on the occasion of the previous talks in Vienna and Berlin. This “gives me confidence that the remaining priorities related to telecommunications, criminal cases and the freedom of movement will be achieved by the Parties by the end of the year, if not sooner,” said Franco Frattini.

The agreement reached on the participation of vehicles from Transnistria in international traffic was applauded. The commitment on the use of farmlands in the Dubasari district and the implementation of the “licence plate agreement” was also reconfirmed. Moreover, agreements are underway regarding the functioning of Latin-script schools, and the opening of the Gura-Bicului–Bychok bridge.

Ambassador Michael Scanlan, Head of the OSCE Mission to Moldova, said: “I am confident the Sides will continue this results-oriented approach over the coming months, as direct negotiations between the Parties in Chisinau and Tiraspol facilitated by the OSCE Mission move beyond the ‘package of eight’ to ensure continued progress in the settlement process.”

The goal of the 5+2 talks is to develop a comprehensive settlement based on the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Moldova within its internationally recognized borders, with a special status for Transnistria within Moldova.