Parliamentary Working Group on Gagauzia reflects on five years of dialogue process

Parliamentary Working Group on Gagauzia held a formal meeting on December 15 to review the results of the extremely challenging past year, and decide on the way forward for 2021. The participants also reflected on the last five years of the sustained dialogue process facilitated by CMI and supported by Sweden.

The meeting was chaired by the Speaker of the Parliament of Moldova Zinaida Greceanii who appreciated the results achieved by the Working Group and encouraged the continuation of constructive dialogue, in the national interests of Moldova. The Speaker also expressed gratitude to CMI for its role in facilitating the process and to Sweden for its continuous support.

I am very grateful that, despite these challenging times, the dialogue is ongoing and is yielding good results.

declared

In addition to the members of the Working Group headed by the Co-Chair of the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova, Vlad Batrincea and Co-Chair of the People’s Assembly of Gagauzia Gheorghe Leiciu, the meeting was attended by Bashkan of Gagauzia, Irina Vlah, and the President of the People’s Assembly, Vladimir Kyssa.

The meeting was also attended by Sweden’s Ambassador to Moldova, Anna Lyberg, and representatives of the Crisis Management Initiative (CMI), international stakeholders, such as representatives of the OSCE, the Office of High Commissioner for National Minorities, the European Union Delegation, and the Council of Europe.

The Governor of ATU Gagauzia, Irina Vlah, expressed appreciation for the support of CMI, Sweden and other international partners, in the dialogue process, that brought their international expertise to the process, including the experience and good practices of European autonomies, which have contributed to creating a vision of Gagauzian autonomy based on its priority needs. An important milestone will be the elaboration of the mechanisms that aim to improve the centre-autonomy relations.

The elaboration of permanent mechanisms will make dialogue between the centre and the autonomy sustainable and will contribute to more effective cooperation between the authorities.

declared Irina Vlah.

The Chairperson of the Gagauzia People’s Assembly, Vladimir Kyssa, added that the Parliamentary Working Group on Gagauzia is the first permanent institutional platform in the 26-year history of Gagauz Autonomy where the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova and the Peoples Assembly of Gagauzia cooperate.

Since 2015, when the Working Group was established, we achieved many results in the economic, cultural and financial spheres.

stated Mr Kyssa.

The Speaker of the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova, the Chairman of the People’s Assembly of Gagauzia, the two Co-Chairs of the Working Group expressed their gratitude to the foreign partners, especially the Government of Sweden, CMI, the OSCE and other international organizations for facilitating dialogue within the Working Group. 

Sweden has supported this dialogue process since 2015 and will continue to make efforts to ensure the sustainable functioning of this platform. This can be achieved step by step by means of centre-autonomy dialogue, their joint efforts on seeking the best solutions and development of effective and functional arrangements, which should be based on trust, professionalism and dialogue.

mentioned the Ambassador of Sweden in Moldova, Anna Lyberg

Since 2015, CMI has facilitated about 50 formal and informal meetings, during which the Parliamentary Working Group adopted more than 60 decisions. It is of utmost importance that this parliamentary dialogue is continuous, ensuring joint work to develop common solutions to common challenges.

said the Country Manager, CMI Moldova, Steve Young

The agenda of the formal meeting of the Working Group also covered the monitoring of the implementation of the Action Plan for the Social and Economic Development of the ATU Gagauzia for 2016-2019; and measures taken by the National Institute of Justice to integrate minorities, including minorities of the ATU Gagauzia, in the field of justice and legislation in the field of culture.

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The Working Group on Gagauzia was established on November 20, 2015, to ensure, within the framework of constitutional norms, the functionality of the autonomous territorial entity of Gagauzia and legislative provisions of the Republic of Moldova on the special status of ATO Gagauzia. The aim of the Group is to improve the functioning of the Gagauz Autonomy within the constitutional framework of the Republic of Moldova on the basis of the Law on Special Legal Status of the ATU Gagauzia of 1994. Since its establishment, the Working Group has adopted more than 60 joint decisions.

Since 2015, the dialogue between the members of the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova and the People’s Assembly of Gagauzia has been carried out with the assistance of the CMI within the framework of the project “Gagauzia Dialogue”. The project brings together legislators, experts and stakeholders from Chisinau, Comrat and the rest of the country to develop joint solutions to common issues related to Gagauz autonomy. Together with the project partners, dialogue building activities were organized through regular informal meetings, discussions, seminars and study visits for capacity-building with the aim of participation in the decision making process and ensuring sustainable dialogue.

CMI is a non-profit organization founded by Nobel Peace Prize laureate, former President of Finland Martti Ahtisaari in 2000. The organization’s efforts are aimed at preventing and resolving conflicts and maintaining lasting peace.

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