European Western Balkans

The SDSM and VMRO-DMPNE confirm: Negotiations at Pržino are suspended


SKOPJE – The parties are not even close to agreeing to conditions that will contribute to fair and democratic elections in Autumn.The SDSM spokesman, Petre Shilegov at today’s press conference, responding to reporters questions, said the negotiations have been suspended because the VMRO-DPMNE wants to discuss the questionable voters on the electoral roll and about the regulation of the media. Shilegov did not answer whether and when negotiations will continue and whether there is an opportunity for a leaders’ meeting.

“Negotiations have been suspended. Whenever we discuss the two painful topics for the VMRO-DPMNE, which are, the cleansing of the electoral roll, or to be exact, 330,000 questionable records and the regulation of the media, it was at that moment that the negotiations ended, by the VMRO-DPMNE. It is obvious that the VMRO-DPMNE runs from fair, free and democratic elections. The VMRO-DPMNE wants to hold elections, but by their own design, as they were before, criminal and rigged. The Social Democrats will not allow it. We have given our word. Nikola Gruevski is political history. A word is a word. Macedonia will have fair, free and democratic elections”, said Shilegov at a press conference.

He also added that during negotiations, while discussing the regulation of the conditions in accordance with the Pržino Agreement, two matters were left open. The electoral roll and media regulation. The party spokesman did not specify whether it will be possible for a leaders’ meeting to be held in the next few days, because, as he said, Nikola Gruevski always runs away from meetings which hold real opportunities for things to be cleared up.

From the VMRO-DPMNE party, they also confirm that negotiations have been suspended, but say it is not their fault.

“We asked all parties to agree that journalists and the media can not be fined, but the SDSM did not accept this proposal. Regarding the electoral roll, yesterday we welcomed the move when the SDSM confirmed that there was no electoral fraud and that the VMRO’DPMNE’s victory was clean”, said Ivo Kotevski.

According to US Ambassador Jess Baily, who with EU Ambassador Aivo Orav brokered meetings between the parties, the solution to the political crisis lies in implementing the Pržino Agreement and the right to advocate with their EU counterparts.

“We are meeting with the parties and are discussing various topics. We are working on the implementation of the Pržino Agreement, which provides guidelines for accountability, given the wiretapping scandal and the serious allegations stemming from it. We hope reforms will follow and credible elections that people will participate in. That is the essence of the Pržino Agreement and the United States and the EU are trying to attain friendship with Macedonia”, Ambassador Baily said at a press conference with the Minister of Interior, Mitko Chavkov.

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