100M euros pledged to Moldova, hit hard by war in Ukraine

Nov 21, 2022, 3:09 AM | Updated: 11:31 am
A power station on the outskirts of Chisinau, Moldova, on Nov. 16, 2022. Massive power blackouts th...

A power station on the outskirts of Chisinau, Moldova, on Nov. 16, 2022. Massive power blackouts that temporarily hit more than a half-dozen cities across Moldova this week following Russia's heavy bombardment of Ukraine have spotlighted the critical impact Moscow's war is having on energy security in Moldova, Ukraine's neighbor, which is already grappling with a series of acute crises. (AP Photo/Aurel Obreja)

(AP Photo/Aurel Obreja)

PARIS (AP) — French President Emmanuel Macron said more than 100 million euros ($102 million) were raised at a donors conference Monday to help assist Europe’s poorest country, Moldova, which is suffering massive blackouts, an acute energy crisis, heavy refugee flows and potential security threats from the war in neighboring Ukraine.

Monday’s international aid conference in Paris was co-chaired by France, Germany, and Romania in support of Moldova and aimed to achieve “concrete and immediate assistance” for the land-locked former Soviet republic, according to the French Foreign Ministry. Two previous conferences for Moldova this year also raised hundreds of millions of euros, but as the war drags on and winter begins to grip, its needs are growing.

Broad blackouts temporarily hit more than a half-dozen Moldovan cities last week as the Russian military pounded infrastructure targets across Ukraine. Moldova’s Soviet-era energy systems remain interconnected with Ukraine, which is why the Russian missile barrage triggered the automatic shutdown of a supply line.

France’s Macron vowed on Monday to continue helping Moldova and said that “fighting for Moldova today is part of the war effort we lead alongside Ukraine.”

Moldova’s pro-Western president, Maia Sandu, said Monday that “the pledges announced here today will help us move forward with our reforms, keep social peace, maintain stability and continue contributing to a more stable continent.”

“Moldova remains Ukraine’s most vulnerable neighbor,” Sandu said. “As Ukraine defends itself from Russian attacks it also defends Moldova and defends the whole of Europe … the international community must do everything to support Ukraine.”

Earlier this month, the European Union pledged 250 million euros (nearly $256 million) to help Moldova after Russia halved its natural gas supply. Moldova’s energy crisis worsened when Transnistria — a Moscow-backed separatist region of Moldova with a key power plant where Russia stations about 1,500 troops — also cut electricity to other parts of the country.

Sharply rising energy costs and skyrocketing inflation are set to put a huge strain on consumers in the country of about 2.6 million as the cold season sets in, a situation that Sandu said could leave many consumers in Moldova “unable to pay their bills this winter if the government doesn’t step in.”

“The war is endangering the supply of electricity and gas. We are not certain we can find enough volumes to heat and light our homes,” Sandu said. “This could jeopardize our social peace and security.”

Moldova relied heavily on Russian energy before the war, and has increasingly been looking to forge closer ties with the West. It became a candidate for EU membership in June, along with Ukraine. However, its joining the 27-nation bloc is contingent on a series of key reforms such as cleaning up corruption and the rule of law and full membership will take many years.

Since Russia invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24, Moldova has been rocked by a series of worrisome events — with many fearing that the war could spill across its border. In July and August, scores of false bomb threats were reported in the country; missile debris landed last month in a Moldovan border village; in April, tensions in Transnistria soared after a series of explosions hit the breakaway region.

Germany’s Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock, who was among delegates from about 50 countries, said that Germany — which has already provided 90 million euros in aid to Moldova — would give another 30 million in addition to that. “Solidarity is the value that defines us in Europe and in the EU,” she said.

“We will not leave Moldova alone in cold or in darkness, nor in a looming recession,” Baerbock said.

___

Stephen McGrath reported from Sighisoara, Romania; Sylvie Corbet from Paris; Kirsten Grieshaber from Berlin, and Cristian Jardan in Chisinau, Moldova.

___

Follow the AP’s coverage of the war in Ukraine: https://apnews.com/hub/russia-ukraine

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

FILE - Dylan Brandt speaks at a news conference outside the federal courthouse in Little Rock, Ark....
Associated Press

Landmark trial on Arkansas trans youth medical ban wraps up

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — The nation’s first trial on a ban on gender-confirming care for children ended Thursday, as Arkansas wrapped up its case defending the prohibition with testimony from an endocrinologist opposed to such treatments for minors. U.S. District Judge Jay Moody, who is considering whether to strike down the law after hearing […]
17 hours ago
Associated Press

Kansas justice chides state law school for ‘closed’ climate

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A member of Kansas’ highest court has resigned in protest from a part-time teaching job at a state law school following what he says was an unsuccessful attempt by the university to pressure students into canceling an event featuring a leader of a group that opposes LGBTQ rights. State Supreme Court […]
17 hours ago
State Sen. Robert Peters, D-Chicago, center, testifies before the Senate Executive Committee on Thu...
Associated Press

Illinois Senate OKs crime bill cleanup and sends it to House

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — The Illinois Senate approved Democrats’ followup clarifications of their landmark criminal justice overhaul Thursday, appeasing critics by adding numerous offenses to a list of crimes that qualify a defendant to remain jailed while awaiting trial. The Senate voted 38-17 to send the changes to the House for action the final day […]
17 hours ago
FILE - Former President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago club is seen in the aerial view in Palm Beach, Fl...
Associated Press

Trump probe: Court halts Mar-a-Lago special master review

WASHINGTON (AP) — A unanimous federal appeals court on Thursday ended an independent review of documents seized from former President Donald Trump’s Florida estate, removing a hurdle the Justice Department said had delayed its criminal investigation into the retention of top-secret government information. The decision by the three-judge panel represents a significant win for federal […]
17 hours ago
FILE - Kanye West arrives at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party on Feb. 9, 2020, in Beverly Hills, Calif. ...
Associated Press

Rapper Ye is no longer buying right-wing social app Parler

The rapper Ye is no longer buying right-leaning social media site Parler, the company said Thursday. Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, had offered to buy Parler in October. At the time, Ye and Parlement Technologies, which owns Parler, said the acquisition would be completed in the last three months of the year. The sale […]
17 hours ago
FILE - Investigators search for evidence outside Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, May 25, 2...
Associated Press

Uvalde sues local prosecutor over school shooting records

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The city of Uvalde sued the local prosecutor’s office Thursday seeking access to records and other investigative materials on the May shooting at Robb Elementary School that left 19 children and two teachers dead, a move that highlights ongoing tensions over the slow police response and information flow on the rampage. […]
17 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Prep the plumbing in your home just in time for the holidays

With the holidays approaching, it's important to know when your home is in need of heating and plumbing updates before more guests start to come around.
(Photo via MLB's Arizona Fall League / Twitter)...
Arizona Fall League

Top prospects to watch at this year’s Arizona Fall League

One of the most exciting elements of the MLB offseason is the Arizona Fall League, which began its 30th season Monday.
...
Quantum Fiber

Stream 4K and more with powerful, high-speed fiber internet

Picking which streaming services to subscribe to are difficult choices, and there is no room for internet that cannot handle increased demands.
100M euros pledged to Moldova, hit hard by war in Ukraine