Russian Military Holds Exercises in Breakaway Moldova Region

Russia's military staged training exercises on Tuesday in the self-proclaimed republic of Transdnestr, a breakaway sliver of Moldova that is a focus of tension following Russia's annexation of Ukraine's Crimea region.

NATO's top military commander said Sunday that he was worried that Russia might have its eye on Transdnestr, a largely Russian-speaking region that borders western Ukraine, after seizing Crimea, which has a narrow ethnic Russian majority.

Russian forces stationed in Transdnestr had "conducted an anti-terrorism drill and practiced operations to rebuff an attack on their military base," said Colonel Oleg Kochetkov, a spokesman for Russia's Western Military District, Interfax reported.

Transdnestr, with a population of half a million people, has run its own affairs since 1992 after fighting a brief war against the Moldovan government.

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