Turkish asylum seeker killed in rare Moldovan drive-by shooting, police say

CHISINAU (Reuters) – A man described by police as a convicted Turkish drug dealer seeking asylum was shot and killed in a drive-by shooting on Wednesday, a highly unusual occurrence in Moldova’s normally quiet capital.

The Interior Ministry of the ex-Soviet state said an assailant aboard an electric scooter fired several shots on Friday morning at the man, who was sitting on a cafe terrace in Chisinau’s stylish Riscani district. The attacker escaped.

Chief police inspector Viorel Cernauteanu told national radio that the incident bore the hallmarks of a highly professional killer.

Police posted pictures online of footage from security cameras of the suspected assailant, wearing a protective helmet.

The Interior Ministry said the victim had featured on an Interpol wanted list on suspicion of trafficking heroin. His asylum application had been rejected, but legal proceedings had not yet been completed.

Residents said the incident was virtually unprecedented in Chisinau, a leafy and generally peaceful city of 780,000.

(Reporting by Alexander Tanas; Editing by Ron Popeski and Leslie Adler)

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