DAILY BRIEF January 21: Acquittals, empty promises, fake news and a dirty (pre)campaign
NEWS OF THE DAY: Acquittals for five defendants in “Spy” case
The Criminal Court in Skopje today acquitted five defendants in the retrial for the “Spy” case. The Court acquitted Mikjo Naskovski charged of “fraud” and “blackmail”, Marjan Madzovski of “blackmail”, Goran Stojkov and Cvetan Damjanovski of “illegal possession of weapons” and Gjorgji Hadzimicev of “using service for personal benefit”.
TOPIC OF THE DAY: Prespa Agreement and fake news – main points of VMRO-DPMNE campaign
VMRO-DPMNE in today’s statement informed the public that “if they win a two-thirds majority, they would do everything possible to correct the damages that Zoran Zaev has made to the Republic of Macedonia”. It seems that precisely the Prespa Agreement will be the topic of the early parliamentary elections as a main element of VMRO-DPMNE’s campaign, just as it was in the campaign for the presidential elections.
In addition to the Prespa Agreement, these days the party has again been spreading false information, through media close to it, with the purpose of creating hysteria in the public. This time, activists Jasmin Rexhepi and Mersiha Smailovic are targeted, who according to these media are terrorists and anti-Semitic. Precisely because of this, Rexhepi in a statement for CIVIL Media announced a lawsuit against journalist Ljupco Zlatev.
Маја Ivanovska: Currently, Mickoski and his little media clerks are on a hunt for terrorist witches along the lines of SDSM. It doesn’t matter that the people aren’t even from SDSM, and even less terrorists.
(entire comment: HERE)
STATEMENT OF THE DAY
POLITICALLY OKAY CORRAL
Today’s day also passed in the sign – there is a desire, but we just can’t agree. If you thought that there is an event or topic on which the government and the opposition are not at each other’s throats, then you are quite mistaken.
First is the Prespa Agreement, which obviously will be the hottest topic around which there will be much fuss in these elections. And while VMRO-DPMNE announces cancellation of the Agreement, SDSM is constantly pointing to the damages that such a procedure could cause.
Today again the government and the opposition did not manage to align their views in regards to the Law on Public Prosecutor’s Office. All are for, but there is no agreement. Much less a law…
They even argued over the Law on Legalization of Illegal Buildings. While Minister Sugareski accused the opposition of impeding the adoption of the proposed legal solution, VMRO-DPMNE is still on the position that the Law is a continuation of SDSM’s criminal working. Again there is no agreement.
But that’s not all. The government and the opposition managed to argue also over the work of the Standing Inquiry Committee for Protection of Civil Freedoms and Rights, which is to consider the conclusion for Ohrid as a UNESCO protected area. Hence, MP Trajce Dimkov from VMRO-DPMNE accused that SDSM has been obstructing the work of the Committee for days. Independent MP Nikica Korubin, on the other hand, presented SDSM’s position that the item on the agenda should not be put at all, because it concerns a complaint from a non-governmental organization for free access to public information. There is no conclusion.
NOT LESS IMPORTANT
It is high time for a step forward, said Dimitrov from the panel on the Western Balkans in Davos. Croatia and North Macedonia have accepted the European values for not discriminating ethnic communities.
CIVIL is organizing a seminar on transparent and responsible political processes that will be held on January 25 in Gostivar, and is intended for the citizens of the Polog planning region. Applying for the seminar is ongoing, and participation is one of the preconditions for monitoring the upcoming early parliamentary elections.
The story about the Balkan recycling of waste coming from Italy to the Balkans, is the topic of today’s column of Saso Ordanoski titled “The garbage is clean, and has been smelling nice for a long time!”, in which he suggests that “if they do some digging into the ‘Bulgarian connections’ of the high echelon of Gruevski’s decade-long rule, such a variety of ‘garbage’ would come out, heavy hundreds of millions of euros, that not even ‘Drisla’ would be able to ‘recycle’ it – provided it received permission to import it”.
Zoran Ivanov, from a corner, writes about the upcoming parliamentary elections and the general distrust of the electorate in his column “The time for all answers is April 12”.
in cooperation with: Dehran Muratov, Angela Petrovska, Saso Ordanoski and Zoran Ivanov
Translation: Natasa Cvetkovska