VMRO-DPMNE’s President, Mr. Hristijan Mickoski entered into a personal confrontation on social media, slandered and threatened journalist Deralla, President of CIVIL – Center for Freedom, an organization for human rights and freedoms, and editor-in-chief of internet media. The very post on social media later became an official press release of the party.
Related to the text of the INDEX (index.mk) portal, titled “Mickoski bought and renovated a house in Kozle worth one million euros”, Mickoski mentions Deralla by name, demanding “media close to DUI (person employed in the cabinet of Artan Grubi) and SDSM (Xhabir Deralla) to apologize to me for the lies they have published.”
In Mr. Mickoski’s post, he insinuates, manipulates and threatens media and Mr. Deralla personally, by which he directly threatens freedom of speech and media freedom.
Slanders and discrediting against media and Mr. Deralla, associating them with political parties, are an unfounded and unprincipled direct attack against their credibility. He additionally threatened that he will raise charges against them.
Such an attack, which comes from the highest position of a powerful and numerous political party, represented by 40 MPs in the Macedonian Parliament, in itself, represents a threat both to the freedom of speech and to the safety of journalists.
Memories of human rights violations, freedom of speech and media freedoms that by the same party during its rule from 2006 to 2016 are still fresh. This should be an alarm for the whole society. We must not allow media to bow their head to the regime drive of Mr. Mickoski’s, or any other politician who tries to threaten freedom of speech.
CIVIL – Center for Freedom calls upon journalist associations, regulatory and self-regulatory bodies, as well as civil society organizations for protection of human rights and freedoms – to condemn and reject such inappropriate behavior by the President of VMRO-DPMNE, Mr. Hristijan Mickoski.
CIVIL will inform diplomatic missions and international organizations and institutions, and will seek protection of media freedoms, including Mr. Deralla, from further public lynching carried out by radical political groups and parties in the country. These attacks last for many years. In this particular case, the very president of a parliamentary political party, VMRO-DPMNE, joined the public lynching.
Translation: N. Cvetkovska