European and international donors pledged to extend 695 million euros (USD 762 million) in aid to Moldova on Tuesday.
Moldova is Europe’s poorest country and is hosting more than 100,000 refugees from Ukraine at a time of soaring energy prices.
German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said at an international donor conference held in Berlin on Tuesday that the allies will mobilize immediate support for Moldova to help the country manage the refugee crisis, address security concerns, and reduce its dependence on Russia.
“This is not a favor to Moldova. This is about us. It’s also about our security. It’s about our common European peace project,” Baerbock said.
Baerbock also underlined that EU countries will strengthen their cooperation with Moldova from a long-term perspective.
“Russia’s war is not just an attack on the Ukrainian people. It is also an attack on our rule-based international order, and our values,” Baerbock added.
Natalia Gavrilita, Moldova’s Prime Minister, told the international donor conference in Berlin that Moldova hosts about 100,000 refugees from Ukraine.
“Since the beginning of the war, 400,000 refugees have crossed Moldova’s borders, and 100,000 have decided to stay. Almost half of them are children, [and] these are vulnerable populations,” Gavrilita said.
Gavrilova said that Moldova, with a population of 2.5 million, has attempted to provide refugees with decent conditions through ‘unprecedented mobilization by the public and private sectors.
“Coping with this influx is one of the biggest challenges any Moldovan government has faced over the last three decades,” Gavrilita said.
Like Ukraine, Moldova is a former part of the Soviet Union, with some of its territory occupied by Moscow-backed separatists.
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