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Russian-Backed Paradiplomacy in the ‘Near Abroad’: Gagauzia, Moldova and the Rift over European Integration

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This article seeks to make two contributions to the literature on paradiplomacy. First, it provides an account of the foreign activities of the Gagauz autonomous region in the Republic of Moldova, which expands the empirical reach of scholarship in the post-Soviet area beyond studies of Russian regions. Second, it stresses that theory-building efforts need to incorporate consideration of foreign states that support diplomatic activities by non-central governments. Such patrons can exacerbate conflict between regional and central governments when they encourage paradiplomatic activities by regional governments to pressure the central government. Moscow’s recent relationship with Gagauzia — and the Moldovan capital Chișinău’s frustration with it — is illustrative of this theoretical point.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Political Science, Oakland UniversityRochester, mi 48309United


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