Moldova is the poorest country in Europe. It also has the distinction of being the only former Soviet country to have voted the Communist Party back in to power through democratic elections. Apparatchiks and ex-KGB agents from Soviet times have managed to cling to key economic and political positions. Communists won the vote again in Spring 2009, but accusations of fraud unleashed violent demonstrations and a constitutional crisis. With their future uncertain, the people of Moldova remain outsiders caught between East and West.
Employed by the Russian 14th Army in Moldova's separatist region of Transnistria, Svetlana smokes a cigarette in a friend's apartment in Tiraspol on 6 April 2009.