Arts & Entertainment

Transnistria, where one can travel back in time to the USSR

By Ignacio Ortega

Tiraspol, Moldova, Dec 4 (EFE).- No place preserves the essence of the USSR as the obscure enclave of Transnistria in Moldova, which thirty years on, still proudly displays the Soviet hammer and sickle symbol and figure of former Soviet president, Vladimir Lenin, on many state buildings.

“No past, no future,” reads a poster on the Sheriff corporation building, the second-largest company based in the pro-Russian enclave’s capital, Tiraspol.

The breakaway state is one of the few that remained loyal to the USSR and its constitution until the very last moment in 1991, while fifteen Soviet republics had already broken ties with the then president of the Kremlin, Mikhail Gorbachev.


Thirty years after the fall of the USSR, statues of Lenin still stand the test of time in many places in the post-Soviet territory from Crimea to Saint Petersburg, but it is in Transnistria that they hold a place of honor.

The founder of the Soviet Union presides over official buildings including the parliament and government, as well as the House of Soviets where the current municipal administration of Tiraspol is located.

“We owe everything to Lenin,” a resident of Transnistria, tells Efe.

A third of the population in Transnistria are pensioners and many are nostalgic of the USSR.

The hammer and sickle is on the republic’s flag and Russia is the lingua franca and half of its inhabitants hold Russian passports.

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