Transnistria is a tiny area that broke away from the Republic of Moldova in the early 1990s. Located in the eastern part of Moldova with less than 500,000 residents, it is a state that does not actually exist, as international recognition is missing. Today, many people living in Moldova and Transnistria arranged with the status quo. People from both sides exchange and have contact. However, politically it remains a “frozen conflict”.
With our project, we want to focus on the unresolved status of Transnistria and find out how citizens on both sides live with the situation.
Our core questions (so far, it’s work in progress):
- In how far does the “frozen border conflict” influence the everyday life of citizens living in Transnistria and in Moldova?
- With focus on labor migration: How do citizens perceive to cross a “non official” border every day? Which challenges (personal/ familiar/ economic / political / criminal) do they need to face?
- Do the non-official borders of Transnistria open the doors for smuggling weapons, drugs and food as well as human trafficking between Moldova, Ukraine and the EU?
- Why does the conflict remain unresolved? Who benefits from the status quo?
- The conflict divides Moldovan society into two “camps”, sometimes even within families. What do the two “camps” wish and hope regarding the status quo of Transnistria?
To answer these questions, we want to portray 3-5 citizens from Transnistria as well as from Moldova, these could be our possible characters (work in progress)
– an NGO- activist based in Transnistria, who combats human trafficking
– a farmer living in Moldova, who crosses the border every day to get to his land, which is nowadays mostly in Transnistria
– a retired truck driver, does not get any pension from Moldova because he lived and worked in Transnistria
– a teacher who teaches on both sides
– a student from Transnistria who studies in Moldova
Through the point of view of these portrayed citizens, the problems, challenges and future perspectives of the “frozen conflict” will become concrete and comprehensible.