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Putin Dissatisfied With Russian-Moldovan Relations

3 February 2006 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin today expressed dissatisfaction with Russia's relations with Moldova.

Moldova's government has stepped up calls for the withdrawal of about 1,500 Russian troops still deployed in Russian-speaking, breakaway region of Transdniester. Though communist, the government has recently turned toward the West.

Putin, speaking at a Kremlin ceremony during which several new foreign ambassadors presented their credentials, said Russia is "hardly satisfied" with its bilateral relations with Moldova.

Transdniester seceded from Moldova in 1990, and the two sides fought a short but bloody war in 1992, which left at least 1,000 people dead. The conflict was stifled by Russian troops stationed in Transdniester.

(RFE/RL 06.ii.06)

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