Russian Interference in Moldova: A Counterintelligence Report

Russian interference in Moldova is on the rise. On 5 June 2024, Igor Gorgan, a former senior Moldovan military officer, was accused of passing on sensitive information about Moldova’s internal political situation to Russian Intelligence. [source] Since 2022, the Moldovan government has been seeking to minimise Russian influence as the country pivots towards greater European economic and security integration. In November 2023, Moldova decided to join the European Union sanctions regime on Russia. The decision angered Moscow as they viewed Moldova to be part of their traditional sphere of influence. Nonetheless, despite Moldovan efforts to curb Russian interference, Moscow retains considerable influence over the former Soviet Republic, notably through Russian-backed separatists in Transnistria. In May 2024, Moldova’s parliament voted in favour of hosting a referendum on EU accession which has likely heightened Russian fears over Moldova’s increasing Western alignment.

Key Judgement 1. It is highly likely Russia still has high-level assets in Moldovan politics despite investigations and expulsions over the past 24 months.

Key Judgement 2. It is likely the FSB is prioritising socio-political intelligence collection in Moldova in order to enhance Russian influence operations and election interference.

Key Judgement 3. It is likely Moldova’s new National Security Strategy and public opposition to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has significantly increased Moldova’s resilience to Russian interference over the past 24 months.

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