Exemption of Bessarabia from the Romanian occupation, 1940. Part 1

After the collapse of the monarchy and the Bolshevik victory in Petrograd, in the spring of 1918, Bessarabia was invaded by the Romanians. The occupation regime was brutal and cruel. All Bessarabians, including Moldovans, which are very closely related to the Romanians people, were considered second-class citizens. March 29, 1940 at the session of the Supreme Council of the USSR Molotov made a meaningful statement: “We have no non-aggression pact with Romania. This is explained by the presence of unresolved contentious issue of Bessarabia”. The conclusion was clear: The Soviet Union intends to immediately solve the Bessarabian issue, if necessary, by force.

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Citizens of Bessarabia

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Soviet tank T-26 in the field in Bessarabia

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A Soviet officer talking with peasants in Bessarabia

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T-26 tanks in the streets of the Bessarabian town

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Soviet and Romanian officers in the negotiations during the operation in Bessarabia

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Soviet tanks BT-7 at the parade in Chișinău

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Soviet artillery tractor T-20 “Komsomolets” with 45-mm guns on parade in Chișinău

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Artillery tractors towing 152 mm howitzer on parade in Chișinău

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Residents of Bessarabia watching the passing Soviet BA-10

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Tank T-26 and BA-10 armored cars on the road in Bessarabia