Violence at Macedonia´s Parliament leaves more than 100 people injured

  • Liis Einstein
  • 2.5.2017 08:42

Violence erupted at Macedonia´s parliament on 27 April, leaving more than 100 people injured. The incident was provoked by protesters supporting the former ruling VMRO DPMNE party. Hundreds of protesters surrounded and stormed the parliament building after the election of an ethnically Albanian parliament speaker, Talat Xhaferi. The police have boosted security around the building when protest continued the following day.

Macedonia has struggled to form a government ever since elections in December 2016 and the election of Talat Xhaferi is the first step towards a new opposition-led coalition government. The Social Democrats have the governing majority in coalition with the parliament’s ethnic Albanian parties. Relations between minority Albanians and Macedonia's nationalists have been tense since the civil war in 2001. A quarter of Macedonia’s population consists of ethnic Albanians, who are demanding more rights according to the peace agreement. The EU and NATO encourage Macedonia to proceed with accession talks but the insufficient levels of democratic indicators, as well as the rising threat of a conflict, are concerning. EU's High Representative Federica Mogherini and NATO's Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg have condemned the violent acts in the Macedonia Parliament, calling for calm and restraint.

About author: Liis Einstein

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