Russian ambassador to Moldova Pavel Petrovsky has refuted reports on the plans to set up a Russian military base in Transdniestria /a self-proclaimed republic within Moldova/. "I want to assure you that all the talks about such a possibility are groundless," the ambassador stressed at a news conference in Chisinau on Wednesday. In his words, Russia's limited contingent will be gradually reduced along with withdrawing the ammunition from Transdniestria, for the Russian military are simply performing patrol functions there. Petrovsky added that the first echelon with ammunition of the 14th army, earlier stationed here, would be pulled out of Transdniestria in the near future, possibly in early December. Russia, he noted, has met its obligations pursuant to the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe six weeks ahead of schedule, having evacuated military hardware from Transdniestria. Now, Russia will have to dispose of and take away a huge amount of ammunition, 42,000 tons, from Transdniestria as part of its obligations under the Istanbul agreements.
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