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Statement by Ambassador Orav on Pardoning

Skopje

SKOPJE – After the decision of the Constitutional Court of Republic of Macedonia, EU Ambassador in Macedonia Mr Aivo Orav issued following statement:

Now that election related offences are potentially pardonable, the power to do so will be in the hands of the current and future presidents of the country. We expect that this tool will be used in the way that democracy will be strengthened, not weakened.

The early parliamentary elections, as envisioned in the Przino agreement, are intended as a key step in a reform process that would restore citizens’ faith in electoral processes and move the country beyond the political crisis.  We expect any action which runs contrary to this objective to be avoided. Any suggestion of impunity in relation to election-related offences would counter-act the efforts invested by the country and the international community towards establishing the conditions for credible elections and trying to restore citizens’ trust in the electoral processes.

Such an action would also be contrary to the decision of the Parliament and of all political parties to establish a Special Prosecutor to look into and prosecute allegations, including of offences in relation to previous elections.

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