The appointment of Georgia’s ex-president Mikheil Saakashvili as governor of Ukraine’s Odessa region will be positive for Moldova, some Moldovan politicians say. There are others, who are skeptical about Saakashvili’s appointment.
“Saakashvili may be a bait for Russia so that the war in Ukraine expands and Kiev could involve certain external forces. Saakashvili was appointed at someone’s behest, given that Ukraine is not an independent state. In addition, Odessa is a specific city where the thieves in law dictate their own rules. I do not think Saakashvili will accept those laws. Consequently, his appointment will be a failure. The new governor must be very cautious,” the Moldovan journalist, political analyst Ernest Vardanyan told TV7.
Valeriu Ostalep, the head of the Institute for Diplomatic Studies, Politics and Security of Moldova, says the Georgian ex-president’s appointment will fuel tensions in the region. “Saakashvili has nothing to do with Odessa region. Ukraine’s president made a mistake by appointing him. The image of the ex-president of Georgia is provocative for the region. His appointment will bring nothing good to either Odessa or us,” Ostalep says.
Vitalie Katane, an expert in the constitutional law, says Saakashvili’s appointment will bring stability to the eastern border of the Republic of Moldova. “Saakashvili as president of Georgia had many achievements, and, the anti-corruption measures were the most important of those achievements. His appointment as Odessa governor will bring security to the region. No one can even suspect Saakashvili of a deal with Moscow. He is the one who can create a balance of power in the region and provide guarantees,” Katane said.
Anatol Țăranu, the head of Politicon Center for Political Analysis and Consulting, shares the previous opinion, though saying Saakashvili’s appointment will destabilize the region. Nevertheless, he believes the decision will be favorable for Moldova. “Saakashvili is the man who has an incentive to act straightforwardly. It is a problem for us. Will we be able to manage the situation? Ukraine has become our ally in the issue of the Transnistrian settlement – something that had not happened for 20 years. And we must take advantage of that situation,” Țăranu says.