Welcome to Comrat, Moldova’s relic Soviet city February 23, 2018 by Moldova 0 Comments Published in the Guardian on 20 February 2018 (reproduced courtesy thereof) Source: click here Welcome to Comrat, Moldova’s relic Soviet city – in pictures In 1991, when Moldova broke free of the Soviet Union, the pro-Russian region of Gagauzia wanted to remain. Twenty-seven years later, its tiny capital looks like a monument to a vanished Europe Workers raise flags at the entry to Gagauzia. In 1991, weeks before Moldova declared independence from the Soviet Union, Gagauzia pronounced itself an independent republic – later commuted to an ‘autonomous region’. All photographs by Alessandro Vincenzi A Gagauz language class at the Comrat Regional Lyceum GA Gaidarji. Gagauz, a Turkic tongue, is the official language of Gagauzia – though Russian, language of Kremlin broadcasts peddling Soviet nostalgia, remains ever popular Preparations to feed 1,300 people on the Gagauz national holiday of Kasym. An ethnic group descended from Turks, the Gagauz people remain fiercely defensive of their culture, and keen to preserve their identity within Moldova. In 2014, a majority voted for closer ties with Russia, and independence if Moldova entered the EU Children rehearse for a ballet, to be performing during the Wine Day festival in the House of Culture in Comrat. Wine production is one of the chief industries in Gagauzia Orthodox Sunday service at the Cathedral of St John the Baptist in Comrat. The women have brought gifts of food and wait for the priest to bless their departed loved ones Stepan holds the Gagauzian flag. He is the leader of Yeni Gagauzia, a youth association promoting the independence of the region A monument in the nearby city of Ceadîr-Lunga, commemorating the work of women and the culture’s relationship with grapes and wine A boxing gym on the outskirts of Comrat, where boxers from across the country, including Transnistria (another autonomous region), gather for training A woman stands outside the entrance to the cinema in Comrat’s House of Culture, before the presentation of the first film in the Gagauz language A man herds his geese in Beshalma, Gagauzia A bus stop on the outskirts of Comrat Vadim plays a game with his German shepherd and a sheepskin. Much of Gagauzia looks like Europe did before urbanisation, with the people living similar lives to those of their grandparents A pastry shop in the village of Avdarma, where the first museum about Gagauz history and culture opened in 2011 Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Google+ (Opens in new window)Like this:Like Loading... Related Posted in:Uncategorized See more Prev:Moldova May Be Eastern Europe’s Best-Kept Secret Back: All Posts Next:Let’s raise a glass of wine in Moldova Leave a Reply Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.