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Chisinau is Burning, Moscow in the Shadows

moldova040709.jpgAs the reports roll in of the bullets and bloodshed on the streets of Chisinau, the capital of Moldova, increasing scrutiny will begin to be applied to Russia’s interventionist position in the country’s politics, which some say could force their bluff on the Transnistrian conflict.

Throughout the day we have been receiving a steady stream of first hand reports from the city from some colleagues of ours.  The violence first erupted following massive student protests of more than 10,000 youths in the streets, who in manifestations of outrage over the results of allegedly rigged national elections this weekend, stormed the parliament (a slideshow of the mayhem can be seen here).  We’ll have more reporting on this situation as it develops, but for now, we share a few of the messages being sent to us from our colleagues:

Do you see what’s going on here? I barely got home (I live in the center). God only knows where my son is, they’re shutting down mobile communications. They’re shooting, blood is being spilled. My God. The situation is out of control.

They’re protesting the results of the voting. But there are more civil ways to do this. Today they threw the children out of the lyceums and universities to make revolution. The Romanian flag is already flying over the Parliament. The Presidentura [building where the President sits] has been ransacked. I don’t know where the fool is holed up.
These are children!!!

Photo: Protesters stand outside the looted and burning parliament building in
Chisinau April 7, 2009. Protesters denouncing a Communist election
victory in Moldova siezed the president’s offices on Tuesday and broke
into parliament where they hurled furniture and computers into the
street, Reuters reporters said. (Reuters Pictures)