Ex PM Georgievski: Ethnic Albanians Will Sober Up Macedonia

Politics » DIPLOMACY | May 10, 2012, Thursday // 14:36| Views: | Comments: 0
Bulgaria: Ex PM Georgievski: Ethnic Albanians Will Sober Up Macedonia Former Macedonian PM Ljupco Georgievski spoke at Sofia University at a guest lecture Thursday. Photo by BGNES

Macedonia's former Prime Minister Ljupco Georgievski has warned in Sofia that ethnic Albanians will probably demand a new formula for their rights in the former Yugoslav republic, unless the country joins the EU shortly.

Georgievski, who spoke at a guest lecture at Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski" on Thursday, was in charge of the Macedonian government in 1998-2002, including during the uprising of the ethnic Albanians in 2001, a de facto civil war which was terminated with the so called Ohrid Accord that provided a boost to minority rights the country.

"Unless Macedonia joins NATO and the EU soon, the Ohrid Accord, which regulates the co-existence of the ethnic communities in Macedonia, will stop functioning within five years, and the Albanian parties will demand a new formula," Georgievski stated in Bulgaria's capital Thursday.

"Macedonia has no time to wait, or we will remain standing together with countries such as Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Kosovo, which are unstable," he added.

The former Prime Minister of Macedonia, who has been described by the media in his country as being "pro-Bulgarian", also commented on the topic of the hate language that the Macedonian press, radio, and TV employ with respect to Bulgaria.

In his words, Bulgaria's policy of abstaining from striking back as the right choice.

"Bulgaria could have declared its claims for Macedonia 20 years ago the way Greece did it, and I absolutely appreciate the fact that Bulgaria never took this road, not even for a second," Georgievski said, referring to the Greece-Macedonia dispute for the name of the latter, in which Greece is concerned that Macedonia's state name could be used to make claims on Greek districts with the same geographic name.

In 1992, Bulgaria became the first sovereign nation to recognize the independence of the Republic of Macedonia, regardless of the fact that up until 1943-1944, when the authorities of communist Yugoslavia decided to invent a distinct Macedonian nation, its Slavic population had been considered part of the Bulgarian nation.

In his lecture in Sofia, former Macedonian PM Georgievski did emphasize that in the last few decades children in Macedonian schools have been taught constantly that Bulgaria is an enemy, while he himself believes that the people of Bulgaria and Macedonia are the closest possible historically.

Georgievski spoke sarcastically about the policies of the current Macedonian government of Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski and the VMRO-DPMNE party, which seek to affirm the connection of today's Slavic Macedonians to the Ancient Macedonian state of Alexander the Great and his father Phillip.

"We are becoming a historical caricature with the making up of some kind of ancient roots of today's people living around the Vardav river," he said.

"I fear that there will be sobering up of the Macedonians but it will be accompanied by tears, and I fear that it will come from the Albanians," Georgievski said, stating that the demographic situation in his country is very difficult.

Georgievski also urged Macedonia to resolve its name dispute with Greece as soon as possible.

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Tags: name dispute, ethnic Albanians, Skopje, Nikola Gruevksi, VMRO-DPMNE, hate speech, greece, FYROM, macedonia, Ljubco Georgievski, Macedonians
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