Germany and Transnistrian Conflict Settlement
In recent years Germany's foreign policy has undergone significant changes. German policymakers are mainly focusing on strengthening the European Union political unity and enhancing its influence. In this regard, relations with the CEE countries and the former Soviet republics have become crucial. Russia is no longer considered to be Germany’s “strategic partner” and is now seen in Berlin as one of the risks to the European security.
Germany seeks to take more responsibility for what is happening both inside and outside the EU. Since 2009, Berlin has been making efforts to resolve the Transnistrian conflict. In 2016, German policymakers managed to resume the negotiations interrupted 10 years earlier and achieve tangible results. Chisinau and Tiraspol have implemented the five points of the Berlin Protocol: settled the problems of vehicle registration and license plates for international transportation; reached an agreement regarding the possession of agricultural land in the left Bank area; ensured the functioning of the Latin-script schools in Transnistria; initiated the apostilization of the Transniestrian University diplomas and the opening of a bridge across the Dniester River. Further implementation of these points will create basic conditions for the final settlement of the conflict.
The article analyses the reasons than caused the Transnistrian conflict to attract close attention of German policymakers. The author reveals the connection of Germany's interest in the Transnistrian settlement with the tradition of the “new Eastern policy” laid down by V. Brandt, as well as with Germany's increased ambitions to act as a EU informal leader in security matters. A special focus is given to the history of the issue, the causes of the ongoing unresolved conflict and the analysis of German actions aimed at resolving the contradictions in Transnistria.
Ekaterina V. SHUMITSKAYA, Cand. Sci. (Polit. Sci.), Senior Researcher, Sector of Political Aspects of European Integration, Department of European Political Studies.
Shumitskaya E. Germany and Transnistrian Conflict Settlement. Analysis & Forecasting. Journal of IMEMO, 2019, no 2, pp. 48-60. https://doi.org/10.20542/afij-2019-2-48-60