New York action demands freedom for Moldovan activist

On June 13, a delegation from the Committee to Free Pavel Grigorchuk brought a letter to the Moldovan Mission to the United Nations in New York, urging the release of the imprisoned anti-fascist activist and drawing attention to grave human rights violations at Detention Center PU-13 in Moldova’s capital city, Chisinau.

The delegates attempted to deliver the letter, addressed to the new government of Moldova, to Ambassador Victor Moraru, Moldova’s permanent representative to the U.N. However, the staff at the mission refused to open the door to receive the letter. Delegates know they were expected — they were told so by a U.S. federal agent dispatched to monitor their visit.

Ambassador Moraru is an appointee of the old regime of the Democratic Party of Moldova (PDM), dominated by oligarch Vlad Plahotniuc and long a recipient of U.S. support. This may explain his staff’s refusal to accept the letter. In the end, delegates left an envelope containing the letter and the International Appeal for Pavel Grigorchuk outside the door of the mission.

Despite steady rain, the delegates stayed outside the mission. They held signs, distributed copies of the appeal to passersby, and chanted, “Plahotniuc says get back! We say fight back! Free Grigorchuk now!” and “Trump, Plahotniuc, you should know, your prison walls have got to go!”

They also called for freedom for U.S. political prisoners like Mumia Abu-Jamal, Leonard Peltier and Chelsea Manning.

The solidarity action received extensive coverage in the Moldovan media.