CHISINAU (Reuters) – Several thousand people protested in Moldova’s capital on Sunday to demand the resignation of the country’s pro-Western government amid mounting anger over spiralling natural gas prices and inflation.
The small east European nation, sandwiched between Ukraine and Romania, has seen political tensions rise in recent months as gas prices soar following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
A Reuters reporter saw thousands of people protesting outside the Moldovan president’s official residence in central Chisinau, chanting slogans including “down with (President) Maia Sandu” and “down with the government”.
Sandu has repeatedly condemned Moscow’s actions in Ukraine and is pushing for membership of the European Union. Her critics charge she should have negotiated a better gas deal with Russia, Moldova’s main supplier.
On Friday, Moldova’s gas regulator raised prices by 27% for households.
Around 10 tents had been set up by protesters outside the residence by the afternoon, following an attempt to create a protest camp outside Moldova’s parliament last week.
(Reporting by Alexander Tanas; Writing by Max Hunder; Editing by Frances Kerry)