“I am fifteen years old, I live in a family that speaks Bosniak and Albanian, and go to school in a Macedonian class. At home we mainly speak in Bosniak, I understand the Albanian language more that I can speak it. I am happy to live in a multi-colored world, where I have a chance to learn about different cultures and languages. Unfortunately, where I live it is very difficult to survive with such thinking, as there is too much bias around.
It was Sunday. That day, because it was sunny, I decided to walk to the barber’s shop. The barber shop where I usually go is in “Mavrovka” two bus stops from where I live.There was a football match that day between the football teams “Shkupi” and “Metalurg”. When there is a match, I often stay at home, fearing that a fight might break out among the fans.
Unfortunately, that day I was destined to get beaten.
Returning home, they attacked me just a few meters before the entrance of the building in which I live. Five “fans” surrounded me and one of them asked me – where I went to school and what was my name. After I told them my name and the name of the school in the language in which they asked, unhappy with my lack of knowledge of “their” language, which in fact is the native language of my father and also my language, they looked at each other. Then suddenly they started hitting me with fists. I defended myself as much as I could to protect myself, but I knew I wouldn’t be able to because there were several of them. After I received a few punches, I managed to escape to my entrance of the building, and they fled.
I had injuries on my arms and head. My parents informed the police who arrived after forty minutes. To this day, the police has still not found the beaters … Until then, I used to take the bus to school, and after this happened my father went to the school with me for some time.
And now when I think about it, I do not understand why I was attacked by the older boys. Is it because I am a child of parents of mixed marriage?! Or is it because of the three languages that I speak I know “theirs” the least? I know that they didn’t attack me because they hate me. How can they hate me when they don’t even know me? Nevertheless, I was beaten even though it wasn’t my fault at all. With each weekly match I remind myself of this incident.
The guys from the fan groups provoke hatred towards other ethnic groups at almost every match with their insulting songs, instead of rooting for their own team. These songs are an insult both to the ears and the heart. Why, instead of sport, do the weekly matches have to be a nightmare for the children, and also for the elderly in my neighborhood? “
Publishing the letter from a 15-year-old, young man from Skopje whose identity is known to us, CIVIL Media once again appeals to the fan groups, and especially to those who poison the ‘others’ with hatred, to stop with the madness and hatred at sporting eventss and on the streets of Skopje and to with stop inter-ethnic fighting. It is clear that the institutions are not reacting and that the structures of power in the country use the tensions and violence for their own dirty purposes, but it is important to resist all of this with high civic awareness and peacefulness.