Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov expressed Russia's readiness to "do everything" to guarantee the protection of the rights of Russian speakers in Moldova.
He said this in a conversation with the mass media when asked about the future of Transnistria.
Lavrov said he considered Transnistria not a "Russian enclave" but part of Moldova, and accused the EU of disrupting the signing of a document that could have completed the settlement of the conflict in 2003.
"Now the leadership of Transnistria and we are in favor of resuming direct dialogue. But, judging by the public statements of President Maia Sandu and her team, they do not want such a direct dialogue under the dictates of the USA and the EU and are counting on a non-diplomatic option solving the problem... We will do everything to ensure that the interests of the Russian-speaking population are not harmed," Lavrov said.
He also added that Moldova has Gagauzia with its peculiarities, and this region also claims a special status.
"I think the authorities of Moldova will do the right thing if they stop playing the geopolitical games imposed by the West and think about the interests of the people... We will insist on this approach," said the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation.
The President of Moldova, Maia Sandu, called on citizens not to fall for the narratives coming from Transnistria and the Russian Federation, and emphasized that Moldova's desire to strengthen the army does not mean giving up neutrality or its aggressive intentions.