Romania’s President Klaus Iohannis will travel to Moldova to celebrate 30 years of independence from the former Soviet Union, his office said Wednesday.
He will be joined by Polish President Andrzej Duda and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky for festivities on Friday in the Moldovan capital, News.ro reported.
The three leaders will give a boost to President Maia Sandu who has vowed to lead her country on a pro-European path. Reformist parties aligned to the president won snap elections last month in the former Soviet republic ahead of the anniversary.
The Romanian president’s visit to Chisinau on Friday marks improved relations between the neighbors since the former World Bank official ousted pro-Russian leader Igor Dodon in presidential elections in November 2020.
Mr Iohannis was the first foreign leader to visit the former Soviet republic in December shortly after her victory.
Romania has donated hundreds of thousands of doses of Covid-19 vaccines to Moldova this year.
The country was part of Romania until 1940 when it was annexed to the Soviet Union under the terms of a Soviet-Nazi pact.
The countries share a common language and history. Four-fifths of Moldovan are of Romanian descent and many have Romanian citizenship.
The country of 3.5 million has been hovered between closer relations with Russia and Europe in recent decades.
Ms Sandu has vowed to crack down on corruption and pursue judicial reforms and move the country closer to the EU. She is bolstered by the victory of pro-EU parties in snap elections in July.
The three foreign leaders, whose countries have strained relations with Russia, will make a joint statement on Friday. Moldova declared independence in the wake of the breakup of the Soviet Union on August 27, 1991.
Mr Iohannis will take part in a wreath laying ceremony at a monument of Stephen the Great, a 15th century Moldovan prince.