Filip’s ‘Govt’ in Moldova Moves Israel Embassy to Jerusalem

As two governments claim to be running Moldova, the one headed by the former ruling Democratic Party on Tuesday declared it would transfer the embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

The Moldovan Foreign Ministry negotiated this move last year but took no further steps on the matter under the pretext of "assessing the issue".

The controversial move - which goes against European Union policy - comes at a time of deep political crisis in the country, after the Constitutional Court - which is under the influence of the Democratic Party - outlawed the formation of a new government under the pro-EU leader, Maia Sandu.

Sandu's ACUM bloc and its allies in the pro-Russian Socialist Party insist they are now the legitimate government of Moldova, and secured official backing from Moscow on June 10.

The EU has confined itself to calling for calm and to saying it needs to work with a legitimate government. However, Germany, France, Britain and Sweden have backed the new government under Sandu.

The Democratic Party, meanwhile, claims it is still running the government and, citing the Constitutional Court ruling, says former prime minister Pavel Filip is now the acting President, replacing suspended President Igor Dodon.

Dodon has refused to admit he is no longer president, and has called for the international community to take action against what he called a "criminal, dictatorial regime".

Filip has also unexpectedly approved the signing of the agreement on the sale of a piece of land in the capital for the construction of a US embassy.

The choice of location in the centre of Chisinau angered President Dodon, who has argued that the site belongs to the people of Chisinau, and that a park should be built there instead.

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