Moldova: Bessarabia Background
BACKGROUND: In the Middle Ages, most of the present territory of Moldova was part of the Principality of Moldavia. In 1812, it was annexed by the Russian Empire, and became known as Bessarabia. Between 1856 and 1878, the southern part was returned to Moldavia. In 1859 it united with Wallachia to form modern Romania.
Upon the dissolution of the Russian Empire in 1917, an autonomous, then-independent Moldavian Democratic Republic was formed, which joined Romania in 1918. In 1940, Bessarabia was occupied by the Soviet Union and was split between the Ukrainian SSR and the newly created Moldavian SSR.
After changing hands in 1941 and 1944 during World War II, the territory of the modern country was subsumed by the Soviet Union until its declaration of independence on August 27, 1991. Moldova was admitted to the UN in March 1992. In September 1990, a breakaway government was formed in Transnistria, a strip of Moldavian SSR on the left bank of the river Dniester. After a brief war in 1992, it became de facto independent, although no UN member has recognized its independence.
Bessarabia (that encompassed present-day Moldova) was an integral part of Romanian territory until World War II. The article below provides a 1930s perspective on "The Political Status of Bessarabia".
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BELOW: Present-day political boundaries
MOLDOVA EVENTS: Bessarabia Background
See Walter Littlefield 1930s article:"The Status of Bessarabia"
See Charles Upson Clark 1926 article: "The Bessarabian Problem"
See Inter-War Romania Facts at memoria.ro - including Bessarabian Counties
Copy of 2009 Signed Petition to Council of Europe read