Moldova MPs to Vote on Expanding Cultural Autonomy of Mostly Ethnic Bulgarian Region
The Parliament in Chisinau will discuss on Friday a draft bill granting a status of a ‘national-cultural region’ to Taraclia, an area in southwestern Moldova with predominantly ethnic Bulgarian population, BGNES reported.
Taraclia is home to more than 30,000 ethnic Bulgarians – the largest ethnic Bulgarian community in Moldova.
The President of the Party of European Socialists (PES), former Bulgarian Prime Minister Sergei Stanishev, and a PES delegation voiced support for Democratic Party of Moldova (PDM) at the opening of the campaign for the country’s parliamentary elections in November 2014.
Back then, Stanishev asked PDM leader Marian Lupu to support legislation that will give a broader cultural autonomy to the ethnic Bulgarians in Taraclia region – a move ethnic Bulgarians in Moldova have been pressing for for years.
The PES leader also raised the issue with Moldova’s prime minister, the president and representatives of the country’s political parties. They assured him that the rights of ethnic Bulgarians in Moldova will be safeguarded and will not be infringed upon by a future administrative reform, which meant the region will not be divided or transformed.
The draft legislation now before Moldova’s parliament is a step in this direction
With PDM part of Moldova’s minority coalition government following the elections, the party is expected to support the proposed legislation, according to BGNES.
Granting a status of a ‘national-cultural region’ to Taraclia will be a success not only for the ethnic Bulgarians living in Taraclia but also for Bulgaria, Stanishev said, according to BGNES.
“It will not only ensure the preserving of Bulgarian language and culture among our compatriots there but will also be a step towards reinvigorating economic activity, tourism and links with Bulgaria,” said Stanishev.
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