Igor Smirnov, the leader of the separatist regime in Tiraspol, was made a member of Russia’s Order of Honor on May 3. Smirnov received the decoration "for strengthening the position of Transdniester on the international level and strengthening ties between Transdniester and Russia." The award is another sign of Russia's support for Smirnov's administration.
A report by the Jamestown Foundation suggested recently that Moscow and Chisinau were on the brink of signing a bilateral deal that would reintegrate Transdniester into Moldova, but with very extensive autonomy and with a guarantee of Moldovan neutrality. However, during a trip to Chisinau on April 27, U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Europe and Eurasia David Kramer said he had "received clear assurances from the Moldovan authorities that no plan was presented to them" by Russia.