The EU’s European Council President Charles Michel on Wednesday said that the bloc plans to “significantly” increase military aid to Moldova. The pledge comes after a series of explosions in Transnistria, a breakaway region of Moldova that borders Ukraine.
“This year we plan to significantly increase our support to Moldova by providing its armed forces with additional military equipment,” Michel said. He pledged that the EU would increase support in the “field of logistics, of cyber-defense” and would provide “more military-building capacities.”
It’s not clear who was responsible for the recent blasts in Transnistria, where there are 1,500 Russian troops stationed. Leaders of the breakaway territory said the attacks could be traced back to Ukraine, while Ukrainian officials accused Moscow of being behind the explosions.
Moldovan President Maia Sandu blamed the blasts on “pro-war” factions of separatists in Transnistria. No matter who is responsible, the incidents raised fears of the war in Ukraine spreading into neighboring countries.
Speaking at a press conference alongside Michel, Sandu said she saw no imminent threat of the war in Ukraine spilling over into Moldova at this point. “We see no imminent threat for the nearest future, but of course we have contingency plans for such scenarios, which are less optimistic or which are pessimistic,” she said.
Moldova is not a member of NATO but applied to join the EU in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.