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Deadlock and division in Moldova: the 2009 political crisis and the role of the OSCE

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Following the contested parliamentary elections in April 2009, the Republic of Moldova entered a period of political crisis and deadlock between the ruling Communist Party and a coalition of opposition parties. Street protests by the opposition over alleged electoral fraud and a heavy-handed government response were followed by repeat elections in July after parliament failed to find a compromise over a presidential candidate. This article explores the origins of the crisis and the ensuing uneasy transition of power. It specifically examines the role of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) during Moldova's political crisis, making the case that although it did not manage to play a key role so far, it has a wide array of crisis management instruments at its disposal through its permanent Mission and its specialized Institutions that could be more actively used to promote stability and democratic pluralism in Moldova.


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