Telecommunications links are via land line to the Ukraine and through Moscow's switching center to countries beyond the former USSR. In 1997, there were 627,000 main line telephones in use as well as 2,200 mobile cellular phones. Radio Kishinev and Kishinev Television broadcast in Romanian and Russian. As of 1998, there were 7 AM and 50 FM radio stations. In 1995, there was only one major television station, but 2001 reports indicate there are a number of smaller, local stations in operation and the country receives broadcasts from Romania, France, and Russia. In 2000 there were about 758 radios and 297 television sets for every 1,000 people. About two Internet service providers served 15,000 users in 2000.
A wide variety of political views and commentaries are expressed through a number of newspapers and periodicals. National and city governments sponsor newspapers, as do political parties, professional organizations, and trade unions. The largest newspapers in 2002 were Moldova Suverana ( Sovereign Moldova , circulation 105,000), Nezavisimaya Moldova ( Independent Moldova , 60,692), and Viata Satului ( Life of the Village , 50,000).
The constitution provides for free speech and a free press, and the government is said to generally respect these rights.