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Moldova political crisis: Protesters break into parliament

Police arrested several protesters after they clashed with security forces and broke into the parliament building on Wednesday, according to local media reports.

Moldova has been home to political uncertainty for about three months after its previous government was ousted by a no-confidence vote in October. Some police officers were beaten by demonstrators, Radio Chisinau reported.

The protesters gathered outside the parliament in the country’s capital, Chisinau, and protested against the appointment of Pavel Filip as prime minister.

The people of Moldova don’t need a government that says pleasant things, but a government that solves their problems“, Filip said after the vote, as around 2,000 protesters stood outside parliament still demanding snap elections.

The third try was held amid protests by the pro-Russian opposition Socialists, who attempted to postpone the vote and heckled lawmakers during the parliament session.

Fifty-seven deputies in the 101-member parliament voted on January 20 for the new cabinet put together by Filip, a 49-year-old member of the ruling Democratic Party.

He later said he was committed to Moldova, an impoverished former Soviet republic with a population of about 4million, joining the European Union. Actions like this show that pro-Russia elements within the country will pose a challenge for the new government, perpetuating the divisions within Moldova’s political system that undermine the small but strategic country’s efforts to integrate with the West.

The country is still reeling from currency depreciation and a banking corruption scandal that cost Moldova more than $1 billion, equal to roughly 12.5 percent of the country’s gross domestic product. Lawmakers dismissed the previous government in October amid corruption allegations.

It comes just days after thousands protested in Moldova, calling for parliament to be dissolved and early elections. Moldovan President Nicolae Timofti then put forth Ion Sturza as a prime ministerial candidate on December 21, 2015, but Sturza was unable to get the required majority of votes. Moldova entered into the year 2016 with no acting government against the backdrop the deep political crisis.

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