Moldova keeps a close eye on Russian ‘peace force’

“It is heartbreaking to see women with young children crossing the border,” said Vitalie Spranceana, a member of the Moldovan Citizens for Peace initiative. Not far from the Ukrainian city of Odessa on the Black Sea, the NOS speaks from the Palanca border post. “There are a lot of people coming. There are not only Ukrainians, but also Azeris and Chinese living in Odessa who now want to go home.”

Moldova is the poorest country in Europe. But generosity is not lacking. Spranceana says many volunteers there provide assistance to refugees. “They heat the tents where they hand out coffee, tea and snacks. That’s a good thing, because it’s freezing and raining here. People are also taken to their homes and taken care of there. That makes me happy to see.”

Groza, the former deputy minister, says that not only has the whole of Moldova been mobilized, but many volunteers from abroad come every day to help. He is currently director of the Think Tank Institute for European Policies and Reforms. “I just met a team of Israeli aid workers, Danish officials come to see how they can help, other EU member states also want to support us. A Canadian, an ordinary citizen, called me to ask if he could come. Help me. I told him to fly to Romania and drive from there. Our airspace is closed.”

Moldova has been under a state of emergency since last week. “We don’t allow air traffic because the Russians fire ballistic missiles and sometimes things go wrong,” Groza said. “We didn’t want to endanger civilians.”

Earlier this week, Moldovan President Sandu visited a checkpoint on the country’s northern border and posted these photos to Facebook:

Source: NOS