Насловна Вести Struga debate incident

Struga debate incident

Yesterday, as part of our initiative "Citizens for European Macedonia" we scheduled a debate at 17:00 in Struga. We came to Struga with our good will and sincere intentions to discuss Macedonia's European perspectives with Struga citizens, and we were welcomed by hundreds of citizens from Struga, Debar and Ohrid.

Unfortunately, among the attendees was also a group of twenty people, with a clear intention to prevent us from having the dialogue with the citizens of Struga and cause an incident; they started to behave violently and brutally, threatening that we would not leave Struga alive. It could have been worse and the verbal incident could have easily escalated into a physical one among the attendees. Our cameraman recorded the developments and the atmosphere in Struga, despite the serious threats addressed at him.

Considering the possibility of escalating into a serious incident, which is the last thing Struga needs right now, given the eruptions of the inter-ethnical tensions in the past weeks, we decided to cancel the debate and apologize to the benevolent attendees. In the behavior of the present hooligans we have easily recognized the scenario of political and police groups to turn our debate into another dispute and bloody feast among Struga citizens.

We immediately informed Ramiz Merko, the mayor of Struga, expressing our deep disappointment because of the incident in Struga, the city that hosted all benevolent people and poets during the past decades. Mr. Merko informed us that local authorities know very well who is behind the plans to cause insecurity. If this is the case, we're expecting from the local authorities and the central government to find the ones responsible for ordering and organizing this incident, shameful for the city of Struga.

Moreover, we would like to emphasize that these staged and uncivilized actions organized by people with evident bad intentions with political motives, are certainly not helping in creating the democratic climate ahead of the upcoming elections, which are the key test for Macedonia's democracy and progress on the way to Europe.

Zharko Trajanoski
Nikola Gelevski
Mersel Bilalli
Branko Geroski
Roberto Belicanec
Vladimir Milcin

More comments and discussions (in Macedonian)

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