A solution to Moldova's Transdniestrian conflict: regional complex interdependence
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Today, political scientists working with international organizations seek to resolve internal conflicts in Bosnia- Herzegovina, Cyprus, and Kashmir. To solve such crises, political scientists have mostly tried to apply domestic comparative politics approaches. These techniques emphasize agreements among internal actors and have not been successful in most cases. In the case of the Transdniestrian conflict in the Republic of Moldova, mediators have found it difficult to achieve internal agreement because external factors also have played a significant role during the conflict. Therefore, even if an internal agreement is achieved, it will remain fragile due to the vulnerable geographic location of the Republic of Moldova and to the limited state capacity to counter influential external actors. For the purpose of solving the Transdniestrian conflict in the long run, this thesis analyzes the possibilities of creating regional complex interdependence around the Republic of Moldova, which would strengthen an internal agreement to resolve the conflict. Regional complex interdependence inter-connects the countries interested in the region around the Republic of Moldova: Romania, the Russian Federation, and Ukraine. This solution presumes external and internal interconnections based on the complex interdependence theory of neo-liberalism. The main potential drawback is that any asymmetrical dependencies in the initial stage of cooperation will imbalance the proposed complex interdependence causing unilateral dependence (most likely on Russia) leading other actors to take countermeasures. In fact, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe as a neutral party has been being a legal umbrella for mediation since all parties consider it an appropriate organization for the negotiations. Nevertheless, creating such an arrangement requires an initial role of the United States of America and the European Union to balance Russian influence until the region becomes interdependent. At that moment, the continuation of the Transdniestrian conflict will become irrelevant because the pre-conditions for conflict will be eliminated.
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