Transnistria is a thin strip of land wedged between Moldova and Ukraine. It is home to more than 500,000 people and has a parliamentary government, a standing army, and its own currency.
A forgotten remnant of the Soviet Union, Transnistria is an unrecognized country hidden behind a heavily militarized border between Moldova and Ukraine. More correctly known as the ‘Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic’ (or ‘PMR’), Transnistria is one of a number of frozen conflict zones that emerged following the 1991 fall of the Soviet Union.
One of the most notable things about Transnistria (and Tiraspol in particular) is the prevalence of Soviet symbology. While socialist monuments and busts of Lenin may still be commonplace in other former-USSR nations such as Ukraine, Belarus and Russia, Transnistria goes one step further, actually referring to itself as a ‘soviet state.’ Communist motifs appear everywhere from schools and universities, to the nation’s hammer-and-sickle flag.