TALLINN - Estonian Socialist MEP Marianne Mikko criticized what she described as carrying on of Cold War mentality by the Russian leadership, while speaking before the European Parliament on Wednesday evening.
Speaking of the Russian embargo on the import of wines from Moldova and Georgia, Mikko outlined that Russia's behavior is punitive action calculated in a cold-blooded manner, which derives from the Cold War policy of spheres of influence.
As head of the EP's Moldova delegation, Mikko presented a declaration that was sent to all of the parties, which condemns the use of economic means of influence for political ends.
Russia has punished Moldova on several occasions since the latter oriented itself politically toward Europe.
"The Kremlin doesn't have a single expert survey to produce to uphold its claim that Moldavian wine is poison. Its goal is to keep Moldova hostage, the Estonian MEP said.
Starting March 27 this year, purportedly to protect its residents, Russia banned the import of Moldavian and Georgian wines. On April 20 the Russian consumer protection authority issued a proposal to remove all alcoholic beverages made in those countries from the stores.
Before the ban Russia used to be the market for about 85 percent of Moldova's wine exports, and wine made up 60 percent of the country's exports to Russia. According to official figures Russia imported 208 million US dollars' worth of alcoholic beverages from Moldova in 2005.