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Early Warning on the Military, Political and Intelligence Agendas of the Ukrainians and Moldovans
There are indicators that show the Russian Federation intends to enter the Republic of Moldova as well.


20/12/2022 Region: Russia Topic: Conflicts

According to online information we find out that on the 15th December 2022 the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, General Valerii Zaluzhnyi stated for “The Economist” that Russia’s deployment “worked” and still is “an issue” to Ukraine. Furthermore, General V. Zaluzhnyi emphasized in his interview for “The Economist” that the Russians were “training around 200,000 troops” and that he “did not doubt that they would attempt a new military operation on Kyiv”.

In this context, it is worth mentioning that the general’s assessment comes three months after the Russian President, Vladimir Putin ordered (21st September 2022) the deployment of Russian troops for the first time since World War 2.

In relation to this information we can say that there are another two pieces of interesting news, worth mentioning. They say that, on one hand, according to V. Putin’s recent statements, almost 150,000 recruits have already been deployed in Ukraine – probably sent to the frontline without proper training – and on the other, Ukraine informs the public that 150,000-200,000 Russian recruits that had not yet been deployed, are currently training.

But behold! In an interview he gave “The Guardian”, the Ukrainian Defence Minister, Oleksii Reznikov said that “almost” 150,000 recruits have been training for “at least three months” in different camps, before becoming part of an extensive Russian offensive, a multidirectional “new wave”, bound for action in February 2023. The comments of the two Ukrainians – general Zaluzhnyi and minister Reznikov – can be categorised as similar to those of the Ukrainian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dmytro Kuleba, who, during a briefing highlighted the fact that Russia might launch a “massive” offensive, “somewhere by the end of January, beginning of February 2023”.

A different relevant information, and extremely surprising for early warning was made known to the media by the Director of the Security and Intelligence Service of the Republic of Moldova, Alexandru Musteata, in an interview he gave TVR Moldova. The Moldovan official said that there was the risk of a Russian invasion to his country, a risk that will persist next year as well, mentioning that Russia plans to invade Moldova in the beginning of 2023. These plans depend on the evolution of the conflict in Ukraine. As stated by Alexandru Musteata, the risk of Russia invading Moldova will linger next year as well, and the issue is not “whether the Russian Federation attacks the Republic of Moldova, but when – either in the beginning of next year, in January/February or later, in March/April. Based on the intelligence the SIS possesses, the Russian Federation intends to take matters further.”

On the word of the Moldovan official, there are several scenarios that need looking into – one of them is Moscow attempting to invade Moldova by land, through northern Ukraine. He also reminded that Transnistria hosts “the largest ammunition depot in Europe”, controlled by the Russians. The Director of the SIS did not rule out that Russia’s possible invasion of Moldova could be associated to using that ammunition – should a military confrontation take place.

As specified by the head of the SIS, the Russian Federation aims at creating a corridor through Transnistria, an issue discussed in spring, following Russia’s large scale invasion of Ukraine. In order to achieve that, the Russians needed to occupy Odessa, Mykolaiv and Kherson, however, luckily they did not succeed.

Under such circumstances, it is worth mentioning the fact that by the end of June 2022, the Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelenskyy stated that his country would fight back Russia’s attempts to strike at it from Transnistria, and the Chief of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defence of Ukraine, Kyrylo Budanov said that his country was prepared to help the Republic of Moldova free Transnistria.