Former President of Romania Traian Băsescu, and his wife Maria, have applied for citizenship of the Republic of Moldova, according to media reports in the former-Soviet state. EURACTIV Romania reports.
The application for Moldovan citizenship was filed by Traian Băsescu, who was president of Romania between 2004 and 2014, on 8 March and is now at the approval stage with several institutions.
It will then be examined by the head of state, President Nicolae Timofti, according to the press service of the Moldovan presidency.
Although the law dictates that the procedure normally takes one year, the former president’s request could be considered as a priority, since his is something of a special case, said the Moldovan presidency’s public relations representative.
Băsescu, who was president when his country acceded to the European Union, and had long been a supporter of Romania’s membership candidacy, had said several times that he wanted to become a Moldovan citizen.
On April 2, 2015, during his first visit to Chișinău, the Moldovan capital, after vacating his post as Romania’s head of state, Băsescu said he would file a request to become a citizen of Moldova when the political situation in the country allowed it, which was not the case at the time.
Băsescu tried to strengthen Romania’s relationship with Moldova while in office, given that both countries share a common language and culture. Additionally, he expressed several times his belief in the future unification of the two countries, either politically or within the framework of the EU.
His unionist stance was a frequent thorn in the Moldovan leadership’s side at the time, and his decision to apply for citizenship comes after more than 500,000 Moldovans filed requests for Romanian citizenship during his presidential term.