Szijjártó: Gruevski crossed three borders legally, our diplomats did not smuggle him into Hungary

Budapest, 21 November, 2018 - 14:08 (META) 

Former Macedonian Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski had to cross three borders to reach Hungary and did so in full compliance with the regulations in all three cases, Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said at a press conference in Budapest today.

He also said his ministry was in no way connected to the case, bearing in mind that the body that granted Gruevski’s asylum was not under the control of the Hungarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

“The former Macedonian prime minister showed his documents in all three cases and they were duly examined by authorities,” said Szijjártó, denying that Hungarian diplomats were involved in any kind of “smuggling or escape plan”.

“They first saw Gruevski at the Hungarian Embassy in Tirana and that’s when they first heard heard about his asylum,” said the Hungarian Foreign Minister, adding he was not familiar with any secret deal regarding the case.

“Dialogue on this matter with Macedonia is ongoing,” said Szijjártó, reminding that he is in contact with his Macedonian counterpart. Interior Minister Sándor Pintér is also in contact with the Macedonian Interior Minister.

Szijjártó also pointed out that in the past former members of government had sought and received asylum.

Vučić confirms that Gruevski went to Hungary via Serbia

Belgrade, 20 November, 2018 - 12:36 (META) 

In Belgrade’s first official response, Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić said former Macedonian Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski fled to Hungary via Serbia, but before a warrant was issued and sent to Belgrade. He also said that Gruevski was accompanied by two Hungarian nationals from Macedonia to Albania.

This is Belgrade’s first reaction after Gruevski fled Macedonia to avoid serving a prison sentence, even though there was much speculation that he fled through Serbia.

Vučić told Serbian television “Hepi” that Gruevski from Macedonia entered Albania, then Montenegro and through Serbia entered the Hungarian border at the Horgos border crossing.

According to the Serbian President, Nikola Gruevski left Macedonia on November 11 and identified himself with an ID card. Accompanied by two Hungarian nationals, they then entered the territory of Albania, from where they entered Montenegro at the border crossing “Hani Hoti – Božaj”.

“Then, on November 11, after 22.30 pm, through the border crossing “Gostun” entered Serbia with an ID card, and on November 12th entered Hungary at the border crossing “Horgos”, with an ID and pass he received from the Hungarian Embassy in Albania,” said Vučić .

The Serbian President said that Serbia did not make a mistake in regards to the situation and could not act differently other than to allow the former Macedonian prime minister entry and exit from the territory. It was handled in accordance with the law, he said.

“An international arrest warrant from Interpol – Skopje was issued on November 13, at 19:35 pm. What do you expect? To arrest people without an arrest warrant? Or without an international arrest warrant? Said Vučić , adding that if they had done so, it would be kidnapping.

When asked when he last heard from Gruevski, Vučić replied that it was during the unrest in the Parliament on 27 April 2017, when Gruevski from Vienna asked him to appeal for calm. However, as the Serbian president explained, they talked again later, regarding the European People’s Party.

The President of Serbia also stated that “Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev has established “normal communications”.

“Serbia has no bad relations with Macedonia, they are one of our closest nations and we will always have good relations,” Vučić told “Hepi”.

US Embassy: The new mayors to be transparent, available and responsible

Skopje, 31 October, 2017 - 14:53 (META) 

“Strong local government lays the foundation for a vibrant democracy. We encourage the newly elected mayors and counselors to be open, responsive, and accountable to the citizens of their municipalities,” said in this addressing the US Embassy about the local elections.

The embassy states that the cooperation with the municipalities, organizations and the citizens will continue in order to promote the key reforms on a local level.

“We welcome OSCE/ODIHR’s preliminary conclusions that the elections were competitive and that respect for fundamental freedoms contributed towards a democratic process. These findings are consistent with what the U.S. Embassy teams observed in both the first and second rounds of elections. Where there are concerns about irregularities and abuses, we again urge citizens to report them through the appropriate procedures and relevant authorities to address them promptly,” states further the announcement.

The embassy recommends the State Election Commission and other state institutions to use this period after the election process in order to focus on ODIHR’s recommendations that were provided after the elections in 2016 and 2017 in order to strengthen the future election processes.

US Embassy: Elections were held in a calm atmosphere, all irregularities to be investigated immediately

Skopje, 16 October, 2017 - 18:41 (META) 

The US Embassy in Macedonia in a statement it gave to “Meta” agency remarked that the first round of the local elections yesterday has passed in a peaceful and calm manner.

They urge citizens if they have met any irregularities and misuse to report them immediately, and the officials to investigate them accordingly.

“The U.S. Embassy commends the citizens of Macedonia who exercised their right to vote in the October 15 municipal elections. We welcome OSCE/ODIHR’s preliminary conclusions that the elections contributed to strengthening confidence in the democratic process and respected the fundamental freedoms of expression and assembly. The elections proceeded in a generally peaceful and orderly manner. Where there are concerns about irregularities and abuses, we urge citizens to report them and officials to address them promptly through the appropriate process. Local governments play a key role in the lives of citizens, impacting health, infrastructure, education, safety, and the environment, said the US EMbassy for Meta.

The Embassy is urging citizens to participate fully and freely in the second round of voting and it reminds that along with other international and local organizations, they will closely follow the electoral environment and have teams to observe the voting on Oct. 29.

MFA: There are no reports that Macedonian citizens were hit by hurricane Irma

Washington, 9 September, 2017 - 15:45 (META) 

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) announced this afternoon that no Macedonian citizens who were hit by the Hurricane Irma, have contacted the Embassy of Republic of Macedonia in Washington asking for help.

The ministry said that they have found out of one Macedonian citizen stuck at the Saint Martin Island from social networks.

“We have a contact with the Office of Foreign Missions in Washington and until today we haven’t received an information about reported Macedonian citizens in the areas hit by the hurricane. From the social networks, we found out of one Macedonian citizen on the island of Saint Martin. Even though the island is under the jurisdiction of France and Netherlands, due to the geographic distance we still tried to get in touch yesterday (through social networks), but we still haven’t received any reply” said the press release.

These are the telephone numbers for contacting the Macedonian Embassy in Washington where Macedonian citizens can call at any time: 202-390-7418 и 202-667-0501.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also informs that according to local authorities, even though the hurricane has dropped to Category 4 storm on the Saffir-Simpson scale, it still poses a threat to the citizens of Florida. That is why it is recommended to follow the latest occurrences and to follow the instructions provided by the local authorities.

According to the information provided by the National Hurricane Center in Washington, the hurricane Irma will reach the coast of Florida next week.

Ivanov: It is unacceptable that the German Embassy based their statement on false information

Skopje, 18 May, 2017 - 9:55 (META) 

“The ambassador from the German ministry used fake news, and then Merkel had to apologize for the incorrect information they received from their Embassy. I appeal to Germany that this level of diplomats is an insult to our country. It is unacceptable for the German Embassy to base their statements on false information. How could I have given the mandate earlier? Should I have violated the Constitution?” Said President Gjorge Ivanov last night in an interview with “Nova” TV.

Ivanov’s reaction comes after the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in a statement welcoming the hand over of the mandate, also wrote that the decision should have been made a long time ago.

Among other issues, when asked about the impact of the international factor in the recent period, Ivanov stated that “we should be concerned with the quality of some of the diplomats in the country.”

“Friendly countries come with the desire to overcome the crisis, to advise us on how to proceed, but we had some uncomfortable meetings and telephone calls with certain people who were not informed and had misconceptions without checking the facts”, added Ivanov.

Earlier, President Ivanov was a guest on the show “Only the Truth” on “Kanal 5” TV.

US Embassy: All questions from Congress are welcome

Skopje, 14 February, 2017 - 18:05 (META) 

All questions from Congress are welcome, said the reply from the US Embassy in Macedonia, to the letter of the American senator Mike Lee that was addressed to the American ambassador in Skopje, Jess Baily.

“We welcome questions from Congress and the opportunity to provide information about out activities and the context in which we work to achieve US foreign policy objectives”, replied the embassy.

American senator Mike Lee sent a letter to US Ambassador to Macedonia to clarify what was the role of the embassy in forming the new government and the involvement of the Open Society Foundation and the implementation of USAID programs.

“This is a critical time for Macedonia and while chosen officials are negotiating a new government after that parliamentary election that was held last December. Unfortunately, I received credible reports that the US mission in Macedonia was actively interfering in the politics of Macedonia as well as the formation of the media environment and civil society, often favoring groups of one political persuasion over others. These reports are discouraging and if true, then they’re truly problematic, “said the letter.


Exercise Conducted By “Alfa” Police Unit Activated Security Protocol at US Embassy

Skopje, 29 September, 2016 - 20:18 (META) 

On September 15, just hours after the SPO submitted their first two indictments, an alarm went off at the US Embassy, ​​and repeatedly on the public address system played, “This is not a drill”.

The reason for the sirens was due to the presence of two dozen members of the “Alfa” police unit near the embassy, ​​which activated the US security protocol and instructed employees to move away from the windows and to find shelter, reports “Prizma“.

The whole drama unfolded around 16:00 pm, and lasted for about twenty minutes, because, as it turns out, the special police unit “Alfa”, unannounced, carried out an exercise, where the officers simulated the reaction in case of a terrorist attack on the US Embassy, ​​without notifying the US Embassy in advance.

The exercise of the police unit for first response and interventions, the “Alfa” unit, was carried out at the behest of Chief Ivica Ancevski-Puki. He asked all teams in Skopje, to gear up head to toe, and to head outside the embassy to assess how much time would be needed for a response in case of a terrorist attack.

However, the US Embassy had not been informed of such an exercise, which is standard procedure in these situations.

The next day, a meeting was called between representatives from the police and the US Embassy, ​​where Macedonian security forces recognized their mistake. Puki, the captain of the “Alphas”, earned him Self a warning for his ‘mistake’ from Ivica Vuchevski, the Head of SVR Skopje and his immediate supervisor.

Auer: France is in mourning, but will not relent in the fight against terrorism

Skopje, 15 July, 2016 - 16:44 (META) 

Today, France is in mourning after the terror attack, said French Ambassador Laurence Auer at the French Embassy after last night’s shocking attack in Nice.

“Today everyone stands with France. Many are still searching for their loved ones”, said Auer.

The French Ambassador said she was in contact with the Macedonian Embassy in Paris and that there is still no information whether there are any Macedonian nationals among the dead or injured.

“We have been in contact with the Embassy in Paris, however, there have been no reports of any injured Macedonian citizens. However, hospitals are full and they are still identifying many of the victims”, said Auer, adding that a hotline has been set-up so people can stay informed and keep updated.

The French Embassy in Skopje on Monday will have a book of condolence where people can go from 10:00-13:00 until Wednesday and leave their thoughts and commiserations.

MFA: No information on whether any Macedonian nationals among dead and injured in Nice, France

Skopje, 15 July, 2016 - 15:21 (META) 

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has released a statement saying they still have no information whether any Macedonian nationals were among victims or the injured in Nice, France.

The MFA stated that they are in constant contact with authorities in France and so far there have been no reports of injured or deaths of any Macedonian citizens. For all issues relating to the safety of Macedonian citizens who are currently located in France, contact the Macedonian Embassy in Paris.

The Macedonian Foreign Ministry expressed their sincerest condolences to the families of the deceased and injured involved in the terror attack in Nice, France.

“We express our sincerest condolences to the families of the deceased and injured, and we strongly condemn these attacks that have killed more than 70 people and injured dozens more”, said the statement from the Ministry.