The mailmen of Chisinau

Jul 1, 2011
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This week Moldovans gathered online to mark their concern about the recent demolition of Chisinau’s historic first post office. They soon found their efforts recognized, if not rewarded, in the real-world response of public authorities.

When it was announced that the first post office in Chisinau, an architectural monument, was to be demolished to erect a business center, citizens took to the Internet in protest. Initially, a number of people changed their Facebook profile pictures to an image of a document that allegedly approved the demolition of the historical building in the center of Chisinau. Soon a group named “Mailmen of Chisinau” was formed and bloggers added their voices to the controversy surrounding the demolition.

The document some Moldovans have decided to use as their Facebook profile picture.

These events followed immediately after the reelection of Dorin Chirtoaca as the mayor of Chisinau. Surprisingly, the mayor himself came to the protest organized by the “Mailman of Chisinau,” his car bearing a poster that read “I also protest” in support of the participants. The blogger Vlada Ciobanu wondered, like many, who the mayor was protesting against and – more importantly – what he was going to do about it.

These actions have led, at least, to a public discussion that included local representatives and participants from city hall and the company that demolished the building. We’ll have to wait to see what further news the “mailmen of Chisinau” will deliver.

Photo of Chisinau post office by flickr user “moncay,” Creative Commons licensed.

About the Author

Cristian Ziliberberg

Cristian Ziliberberg has been involved in Moldova’s civil society movement since 1998. He has worked for the Resource Center for Human Rights, the Center for Organizational Training and Consultancy, the Leadership Institute, and as TOL’s project manager for Moldova for the past year.
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