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Macedonia's president calls on EU, NATO to condemn 'Tirana platform'

Macedonia's president calls on EU, NATO to condemn 'Tirana platform' Author: Macedonia's presidency. Licence: All Rights Reserved.

SKOPJE (Macedonia), March 7 (SeeNews) - Macedonia's president Gjorge Ivanov on Tuesday urged the EU and NATO to publicly condemn the 'Tirana platform' - a list of political demands put forward by ethnic Albanian parties in the country and facilitated by Albania's prime minister - which has hindered the formation of a new government in Skopje.

Ivanov also asked the EU and NATO to condemn the "flagrant interference in the internal affairs of the Republic of Macedonia" of neighbouring Albania and Kosovo, referring to the participation of Albania's prime minister Edi Rama in the drafting of the platform and the reactions of officials and institutions following Ivanov's refusal to award a mandate for forming of Macedonia's new government to Zoran Zaev, leader of the Social Democratic Union of Macedonia (SDSM).

Last week, Ivanov refused to offer Zaev to form a government, citing concerns that SDSM's agreement with ethnic Albanian parties in parliament to make a government coalition threatens the country's sovereignty. Zaev, whose party came in second in the December early election, secured a parliamentary majority to form a government after reaching an agreement with three ethnic Albanian parties on key issues regarding the governance of Macedonia, including the use of the Albanian language. The deal came after the election winners, conservative VMRO-DPMNE party, failed to agree with ethnic Albanian party DUI on forging a government coalition.  

""The platform is a post-election document adopted in a foreign country, in the office of a foreign statesman, mediated by the Prime Minister of a foreign country," Ivanov said in a letter sent to the members of the European Council, the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and the presidents of the United States and Turkey, Donald Trump and Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

"This platform endangers the sovereignty and independence of the state, bringing the Republic of Macedonia to a position of subordination or dependence in relation to another country," Ivanov pointed out in the letter published on the website of the president's office.

According to the president, the way in which the platform was signed and statements made by Albanian and Kosovo officials affect negatively the neighborly relations and destabilize the Western Balkan region.

"This platform has led us to a standstill it is difficult to get out from because of its ultimate and blackmailing nature," Ivanov said.

The Macedonian president reiterated his position that the decision to refuse to award the mandate to Zaev is in line with the country's constitution.

Since last Wednesday, EU, NATO and U.S. representatives have urged Ivanov to reconsider his decision.

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