Protesters try to block US troops from entering Republic of Moldova for joint drill
American and Moldovan troops have begun the joint exercise Dragon Pioneer 2016 on May 3 in the neighboring Republic of Moldova, after protesters tried to block the US troops from entering the country.
The join drills are scheduled to continue until May 20 and are a first for the Republic of Moldova.
After crossing Romania, the US military vehicles entered Moldova on Tuesday morning, May 3, through the Sculeni checkpoint. Protesters from the Socialist Party of Moldova, a pro-Russian opposition party led by Igor Dodon, tried to block their route, as they’ve previously announced they would do, reports local Hotnews.ro. They were carrying placards with slogans against NATO.
But a small group of people also came to welcome the US troops.
During the Dragon Pioneer 2016 exercise, the US and Moldovan troops will conduct joint training as the activities aim to increase cooperation between the two armies, reports Radiochisinau.md.
Some 58 technical units of the US Army will attend the exercises, including combat vehicles, HMMWVs (Humvees), and transport vehicles. The Moldovan Army will participate with 40 vehicles.
Irina Popescu, firstname.lastname@example.org
(photo source: Igor Dodon on Facebook)