The study examines the way in which voters’ opinion about the country’s foreign orientation options is formed. On the example of reflecting the global state leaders’ actions, it is proved the Russian television’s domination over informing most citizens on foreign policy issues. By doing so, the media controlled by the Russian state denigrates manipulatively the image of the EU and the US and induces an erroneous view of the real situation in the Russian Federation. Through this domination, the Russian Federation shapes geo-political options among Moldovan voters. Because of the distorted image over the Western foreign policy, almost half of the voters opt for the Eastern integration vector. Moreover, due to media influence, Vladimir Putin is the most popular politician in the Republic of Moldova, and his support generates very high electoral confidence to the domestic political actors. The new legislation applied regarding limiting the Russian media presence has a small impact and requires far more consistent legislative intervention. In addition to the effort of striving to limit the influence of manipulating mass media from the Russian Federation, it is necessary to stimulate the local media to provide more consistent information on international politics.
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The study was developed as part of the project “Watchdog.MD: Whistle-blowers in Energy and Public Policies in Moldova”, implemented with the financial support of the European Endowment for Democracy (EED). The content does not necessarily represent the official opinion of the EED. Responsibility for information and expressed views belongs entirely to the authors.