Ukraine's foreign ministry on Wednesday cautioned against any meddling from Russia in Moldova's breakaway region of Transnistria, whose separatist leaders earlier appealed to Russia for "protection".

The move from Transnistrian separatists raised fears that the landlocked territory could become a new flashpoint in Moscow's conflict with neighbouring Ukraine.

"The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine... calls for a peaceful resolution of economic, social and humanitarian issues between Chisinau and Tiraspol without any destructive external interference," the ministry said.

Transnistria is a primarily Russian-speaking region that has long depended on Moscow for support.

After the separatist lawmakers' resolution was passed, Russia's foreign ministry said it considered "all requests" for help.

"Protecting the interests of the residents of Transnistria, our compatriots, is one of our priorities," the ministry told Russian news agencies.


Officials in Moldova and analysts have downplayed concerns.

But the move has fuelled comparisons with February 2022, when Russian-backed militants in eastern Ukraine asked for protection against what they said was relentless attacks by Kyiv's forces.

"Our country knows the horrors of war and the price of peace better than anyone else," Ukraine's foreign ministry said.

"We are making and will continue to make every effort... to prevent any attempts by Russia to destabilise Moldova or other countries in our region," it added.

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What happens if breakaway Transdnistria joins Russia? You can read it here.

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