Incoming Moldovan President Igor Dodon is reportedly planning to strip former Romanian President Traian Băsescu of his Moldovan citizenship. EURACTIV Romania reports.
Recently-elected pro-Russian socialist Dodon said during a television appearance that next week, he will cancel the decree that granted Moldovan citizenship to former Romanian head of state Băsescu, according to Moldovan media.
Dodon, who finally triumphed in a second run-off election last month, claimed that Băsescu’s bid violated procedure but that the former president was welcome to resubmit his application and that it would be examined at a later date.
Băsescu and his wife Maria became citizens of Europe’s poorest country on 3 November at a ceremony at the Moldovan embassy in the Romanian capital of Bucharest. He had previously said he would appeal if the incoming president chose to withdraw his and his wife’s citizenships.
Romania’s former president was in office from 2004 until 2014 and was a longtime advocate of closer ties between Bucharest and Chişinău, even going as far to suggest that the two countries should reunite. Romanian citizenship was made readily available to Moldovans that wanted it during his tenure too.
Băsescu was even considering embarking on a political career in the Eastern European state, claiming in November that he had “options”. This new development is likely to put his plans on ice for the time being.
Dodon is set to be sworn in on 23 December after the country’s Constitutional Court rubber-stamped the election result that saw him defeat opponent Maia Sandu, with 52.2% of the vote.
The former leader of the country’s Socialist Party campaigned on a pro-Russia ticket and has pledged to push for early parliamentary elections next year. Dodon has been invited to the Kremlin by Russian President Vladimir Putin.