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Moldova re-establishes Pro-European alliance

Moldova's acting president Marian Lupu appointed the leader of a pro-European party, Vladimir Filat, as the country's PM on 31 December. The move appears to end speculation that the Communists might return to power.

The President of the Democratic Party, Marian Lupu, who was elected speaker of Moldova's Parliament on 30 December, signed a decree the next day instructing former Prime Minister Vlad Filat to form a government, according to local media reports.

Lupu is now expected to hold the posts of Parliament speaker and interim president.

The Romanian daily Romania Libera was surprised by the decision as Lupu had been expected to change camps and form a government with the country's pro-Russia Communist Party (see Background).

A former communist, Marian Lupu, 44, established his own opposition party, the Democratic Party, which became part of the pro-European Alliance for European Integration that was assembled in August 2009. In elections on 28 November, Lupu's party obtained 15 seats in Parliament and he came to be widely seen as a kingmaker.

In a parliamentary ballot on 31 December, Lupu, who was the only candidate for the post of speaker, obtained all 57 votes. These were cast by the three parties of the re-established pro-European alliance - the PLDM, PD and PL. However, the majority fell short of the 61 votes needed to elect a President (see Background).

Moldova's Parliament has 101 MPs. But the Communists did not take part in the ballot. Their leader, Vladimir Voronin called the formation of a pro-European coalition a "farce" which he said would have "unpredictable consequences", the Russian agency Itar-TASS reported.

"The new authorities do not have a clear prospect and the new coalition does not have strategic interests, but only personal ones. These [personal] interests will win over soon," he said.

By contrast, Romania's Foreign Ministry welcomed the signing of an agreement reconstituting the Alliance for European Integration (AIE) and commended the leaders of its three parties for creating "a political edifice designed to ensure the continuation of the European course of the Republic of Moldova".

The Ministry also expressed hopes that the new ruling alliance would garner the necessary parliamentary support to elect a President, which it described as a prerequisite for enhancing domestic political stability.

Romanian press reports indicate that the three parties of the pro-European alliance control 59 votes in Parliament, and are expected to attract the two votes from the Communist Party's ranks they need to elect a President. If this scenario is born out, Marian Lupu would become the head of state, while Mihai Ghimpu could become the new Parliament speaker. (EurActiv)


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