Report: Pro-Russian separatists put Army on alert, Moldova says an attempt to destabilize

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A news agency says pro-Russian separatists in a breakaway region of Moldova have put their army on alert, claiming they fear military action from their neighbors, Ukraine and Moldova.

The Trans-Dniester Tiras news agency said Thursday that separatists expected military activity starting from Aug. 26, the day before Moldova's independence day, but provided no details. Moldovan authorities accused separatists of misinforming the public.

Tensions have risen since Moldova signed an association agreement in June with the European Union, something Russia opposes. Trans-Dniester, a narrow strip of land squeezed between Moldova and Ukraine, wants to be part of Russia.

Ukrainians have dug a ditch along the border with Trans-Dniester fearing 1,500 Russian troops stationed there may invade. Moldova has asked Russia to withdraw the troops.