According to the White House, Russia is working to overthrow the government in Moldova.
US officials have warned that Kremlin-affiliated “actors” plan to stage protests in an eastern European country in a bid to “destabilize” it, with the ultimate goal of seeing a more pro-Russian government in power.
National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said as the country seeks to integrate with Europe, Russia is pursuing “options to weaken the government”.
“Also, we expect another group of Russian actors to provide training and help in making performances in Moldova,” he added.
“Russia has tried and failed to destabilize other European countries, Montenegro in 2016 is a recent example.
“The activities of Russian groups trying to attack Moldova are a cause for concern, but we should not overestimate their capabilities.”
Mr Kirby also pointed to recent Russian efforts aimed at sowing disinformation about Moldova’s overall stability.
He specifically pointed to the Russian Defense Ministry’s claim last month that Ukraine was planning to invade Transnistria, the Moscow-backed separatist region of Moldova where Russian troops are stationed.
He called this action “unfounded, false” and insisted such claims “set off unfounded alarm”.
The White House statement was released just weeks after a series of anti-government protests in the capital, Chisinau.
Thousands of protesters took to the streets, organized by a group calling itself the Movement for the People and backed by members of the pro-Russian Shor party, which holds six seats in the country’s 101-seat legislature.
Another protest is planned by the group for tomorrow.
Sandwiched between Ukraine and Romania, Moldova has often been at the center of a struggle between Moscow and the West.
The back-and-forth has only intensified since Vladimir Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine last year.
The US is now releasing this information to thwart Russia’s plans for Moldova and has pledged an additional $300 million to meet urgent needs created by the war in the country.
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https://metro.co.uk/2023/03/11/russia-linked-actors-plotting-to-overthrow-moldovas-government-us-warns-18424598/ US warns 'actors' with Russia ties plot to overthrow Moldova government