Crisis in Ukraine: Moldova bans all flights to Russia

LONDON – In recent days, the Moldovan government announced that it would ban all flights to and from Russia to the country.

This is part of a controversial action that has taken place in Moldova in recent days.

Air Moldova gets lost?

For context, it all started when Air Moldova announced that it would resume operating flights to Moscow from October 1, following such cancellations in February 2022.

The airline said the following about it on September 9:

“This decision follows countless requests from citizens of the Republic of Moldova, based in the Russian Federation, and their decision to return home.”

“At the same time, the decision to resume flights is due to requests from passengers to use tickets purchased during the pandemic period and after the suspension of flights in February.”

“These circumstances have created difficulties, which hundreds of passengers face every day: repeated purchase of tickets at higher prices, long time spent traveling, inconvenience of stopover flights, especially for medical emergencies.”

Moldova’s Civil Aviation Authority has issued an order prohibiting all domestic airlines from flying over Russian airspace for safety and security reasons.

Spinu: Are Air Moldova workers pro-Russian?

Added to this is the Deputy Prime Minister of Moldova, Andrei Spinu, who said the following:

“We believe that such thefts are risky, and I ask citizens not to be fooled by this announcement because nothing is clear yet.”

Igor Grosu, Speaker of the Parliament of Moldova, says those responsible for the announcement want to destabilize the region. This is what he told TVR Moldova:

“It’s a lie like many others that is meant to raise expectations and create tension. It was an instrument of manipulation and misinformation by this company that still belongs to people who should be in jail.

It won’t come as much of a surprise given the ongoing tensions near the Russian and Ukrainian borders at the moment.

And now ?

It is likely that Air Moldova and the government will continue to fight in court to have this order overturned.

With Air Moldova aiming to take a grassroots approach to this issue, it will set the Moldovan government back a bit, especially if tension and pressure increases from the electorate in the region.

Going forward, it’s unclear what the next steps will be, as fighting will likely take place behind the scenes until one side relents or until the conflict ends.

With Russian forces struggling in Ukraine right now, this crisis seems to be taking an interesting turn and could potentially end much sooner than expected.

Christi C. Elwood