Moldovan court bans pro-Russian party

Moldova’s top court has ordered the immediate dissolution of the pro-Russian party Shor.

The Constitutional court on Monday said that the party was „unconstitutional” and would be abolished.

In March, Moldova’s police chief warned that Russian intelligence agencies had been using protests organized by Shor to try to destabilize the country of 2.6 million.

Ilan Shor, a fugitive businessman who fled to Israel in 2019 after being convicted of fraud and money-laundering heads the party.

Following the court ruling, Shor claimed that the move had „nothing to do with a rule-of-law state, democratic principles and values, the supremacy of laws and the constitution” in a post on Facebook.

He also said that the decision was made under pressure from „puppeteers from abroad”.

Shor said he would appeal against the ruling at the European Court of Human Rights and „bring to account all those who participated in this illegal process”.

Supporters of the party gathered outside the Constitutional Court in Chisinau, ahead of the ruling, carrying placards with anti-government slogans.

Moldova’s pro-Western president, Maia Sandu, welcomed the court’s decision, writing on Facebook that it was „expected by society because Moldovans value democracy and want to live in a democratic state which respects the rule of law, a state where criminal organizations are not protected but prevented from capturing the state”.

Ms Sandu said that the Shor party was „set up because of corruption and for corruption” and  „poses a threat to the constitutional order and the state’s security”.

Last February, Shor organized demonstrations in Chisinau and reportedly paid for protesters from across the country to attend them.

Ms Sandu accused Russia of plotting to use foreign „saboteurs” to overthrow her pro-EU government  aided by saboteurs from Russia, Serbia, Belarus and Montenegro.

Shor is currently under UK, US and EU sanctions for collaborating with Russia to try to topple Moldova’s government.

When Shor fled Moldova, he was facing prosecution for involvement in the theft of $1bn from three Moldovan banks for which he was sentenced to 15 years in prison. Moldova has asked Israel to extradite Shor.

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