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“We are concerned about the situation of political prisoners in Moldova”

 “We are concerned about the situation of political prisoners in Moldova”

On the occasion the European Parliament debate about the political situation in Moldova on 25 November, Gabriele Zimmer stated:

“In the fight against corruption and the reform of the judicial system, the Moldovan authorities must respect their commitments stipulated in the EU-Moldova Association Agreement. We are particularly concerned about the situation of political prisoners who were arrested during a mass protest on 6 September in Chisinau and who are still being held in preventive detention. Among the prisoners is Mr Gregori Petrenco, Chair of the Red Block opposition party, a former Member of Parliament and of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.”

During the European Parliament debate, members of all political families expressed their disappointment at the grand scale corruption scandal in Moldova and their worries about control of political parties, the economy, the media and the judicial system be the oligarchy.

The debate was followed by a meeting with Mr Petrenco’s wife, Lilia Petrenco, and his lawyer, Ana Ursachi. During this meeting, Ms Petrenco and Ms Ursachi presented their concerns about the trial against Mr Petrenco and his fellow defendants to members of the European United Left/Nordic Green Left (GUE/NGL) group in the European Parliament.

After the meeting Ms Zimmer stated: “Peaceful protest and free speech are basic civil rights and core European values that must be respected by the Moldovan authorities also. I assume that all the evidence and indications about the incidents of 6 September are thoroughly taken into account and that the presumption of innocence applies also to Mr Petrenco. I hope that he can be released soon.”

 

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