Xhaferi: Discussions in the Jean Monnet process are taking place in a constructive atmosphere

Ohrid, 18 May, 2018 - 19:10 (META) 

Discussions in the “Jean Monnet” process are taking place in a constructive, working atmosphere, with a consensual attitude between the participants in the need for regulation, that is, the regulation of relations in the Legislative Assembly, said Speaker of Parliament Talat Xhaferi from Ohrid, where talks are under way between representatives of the parliamentary parties in the Macedonian Parliament within the process “Dialogue Jean Monnet” initiated by MEPs Ivo Vajgl, Knut Fleckenstein and Eduard Kukan.

“Topics for Discussion are the following – the need for amendments to the Rules of Procedure and the adoption of the Code of Ethics, with added questions to what has already been discussed in other forms, which is more independent and independent of the Assembly. In the afternoon, we had a fruitful debate on the Code, and I think that it is finished in regard to the text prepared with the support of the EU, and I expect it to result in its consensual adoption as a guideline regarding the behavior of MPs in and out of Parliament”, said Xhaferi emphasizing this issue of particular importance regarding the return of trust in the institution MP.

The dialogue in Ohrid is scheduled to be completed with conclusions that will be presented at a dinner attended by the leaders of the parliamentary political parties, Prime Minister and SDSM leader Zoran Zaev, the leader of VMRO-DPMNE, Kristijan Mickoski, DUI leader Ali Ahmeti , DPA leader Menduh Thaci, Ziyadin Sela from the Alliance of Albanians and from Besa Bilal Kasami. Sergei Stanishev, president of the European Socialist Party, is also scheduled to attend.

Last night, as an introduction to the dialogue, a dinner was held for the participants in the talks, where MEP Ivo Vajgl said that the aim of the meetings are so that all issues that might not be reached by consensus are discussed without the presence of the general public, in an open atmosphere.

Zaev – May: An acceptable option for the name is a complete solution

Skopje, 17 May, 2018 - 23:52 (META) 

Theresa May, the first UK prime minister to visit Macedonia in almost two decades, said that Macedonia is an integral part of Europe and pledged support for Macedonia’s integration into the European Union.

May, who was greeted with full honours at the Government said in regards to the name dispute, that it was important that Macedonia had reached out to its neighbor, but decisions require strong political willingness and courage.

“I know that conflicts of the past can sometimes seem almost impossible to overcome. Many difficult questions remain unresolved – including internal conflicts in the region, serious and organized crime, illegal migration and extremism. We must be alive to the challenges of the past, yet remain ambitious in securing the peaceful, prosperous and democratic future that your citizens and communities deserve”, said Prime Minister May.

Prime Minister Zoran Zaev described the visit as the peak of the long-standing partnership between the two countries, and at the next summit in London, he expects European leaders to verify the progress made by Macedonia. He returned from Sofia full of optimism.

“One thing is for certain, the friendship between Macedonia and Greece will grow and there is no escaping that. Trust has been built. Citizens are cooperating, institutions will cooperate and that will continue to be the case. I sincerely believe that we can find a solution, an option that would be acceptable to both sides is the complete solution. At this time, consultations are ongoing in both countries”, Zaev said.

This afternoon, Prime Minister May met with the Parliament Speaker, Talat Xhaferi, and expressed support for the reforms, stressing that she acknowledged that Macedonian Parliament had witnessed a difficult time last year. May also noted that she is aware of the significant changes that have taken place since then.

“I am proud that the United Kingdom supports these reforms through our funding programs. When democracy rules, the benefits are felt by everyone – a stronger Parliament means a stronger Macedonia”, said May, who also had a meeting with VMRO-DPMNE opposition leader Kristijan Mickoski.

The Parliament will get a Code of Ethics, today the French model has been studied

Skopje, 10 May, 2018 - 21:59 (META) 

The Parliament of the Republic of Macedonia is preparing a Code of Ethics that aims to strengthen the ethics of the MPs and increase confidence in Parliament.

At the panel discussion “The Role of the Parliamentary Ethic in the Implementation and Respect of the Code of Ethics in Parliaments – Practice of the National Parliament of the French Republic”, Parliament Speaker Talat Xhaferi stated that the document is in draft version and it should provide ethical norms, standards and rules for everyday, doesn’t matter who is in power or in opposition.

According to the ethical expert in the French Parliament, Ferdinand Sukramanen, parliamentary ethics should be based on four principles, namely trust between MPs, their behavior outside Parliament, their fees, and the control of their expenses.

“Parliamentary ethics is the basis for creating confidence in the Parliament. It should contain any statement by the Member of Parliament, the survey questionnaire, its links to the business, private interests, etc. In France, there is a principle for every gift that is above 150 euros, the MP should consult with those of the parliamentary ethics. MPs travel expenses should be paid on an independent account, so they can be controlled easier. For every expense, even private, but of public interest, the MP should consult with those responsible for ethics in order to take preventive measures for possible abuses”, Sukramanen pointed out.

Next week in Ohrid, the Code of Ethics will be part of the dialogue between the Government and the opposition, within the framework of the “Jean Monnet” dialogue. The initiative of several MEPs was scheduled for January and postponed due to disagreement among all political parties.

Dimovski: Visitors to opposition MPs are being reported to their employers

Skopje, 2 May, 2018 - 21:47 (META) 

At today’s 45th session in Parliament, VMRO-DPMNE MP Ilija Dimovski asked to address colleagues, who after a short debate with the Parliament Speaker was granted permission. But instead of discussing the extensive agenda, as his party counterpart Dragan Danev had done before him, Dimovski issued serious allegations of abuse in Parliament.

He said that he had serious knowledge of guests who had visited Parliament to see opposition MPs, who were employed in state institutions, had been reported to their employers, that is, lists were sent to institutions of people who had visited certain MPs in Parliament.

“I just want to inform the public about one thing that happens when certain citizens visit offices in Parliament and are obliged to register with an application form. There is a list of people who came to meet Dimovski, Tuntev, Gashi, and Sela. What is striking and astonishing is that we have confirmation from institutions, where some of those people work that such a list from Parliament is being forwarded to those institutions. These are people who came to meet with MPs and who are not part of the ruling majority. Under special observation are the guests of Sela, Gashi, Nikola Popovski, Antonio Milososki, myself and other MPs from the opposition party VMRO-DPMNE. I’m not asking for any action to be taken, I know the reason, the wishes and the motives behind this. My goal was to inform the Macedonian public about what kind of totalitarian system exists in this Parliament”, said Dimovski.

Moreover, Xhaferi told Dimovski that he was abusing the parliamentary pulpit for a topic not envisaged in the agenda, warning him if he had any information, to report it to the relevant services.

Šekerinska: Last year on April 27 we reached rock bottom and were on the brink of civil war

Washington, 27 April, 2018 - 15:38 (META) 

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense Radmila Šekerinska launched her official visit to the United States by taking part in a round table organized by the American Atlantic Council on the topic “The Balkans and NATO membership through the prism of Macedonia: High stakes in terms of global security and the fate of democracy in a small country “.

Šekerinska talked about the Balkans and the challenges it has faced in the past, the political crisis in Macedonia and the new reform processes, as well as the return of the country on its path to Euro-Atlantic integration.

“In these 10 months we have seriously focused on domestic reforms and on improving good neighborly relations. We focused on issues at the heart of Euro-Atlantic integration – free media, rule of law, interethnic relations and institutional resilience. We ask you to support Macedonia to receive an invitation to join NATO this year, because such a breakthrough can have a positive impact, which will create a new hope in the Balkans”, said the minister.

Turning to the events in Parliament that occured on the present day last year, Šekerinska said that last April, Macedonia “reached rock bottom”.

“The incident could have completely spun out of control and threatened to take the country a step closer to civil war. We had formed a majority in Parliament and everyone expected a new, reform-oriented government to be elected, and the people who wanted to stay in power saw that violence was their only way of staying. Fortunately the attempt was unsuccessful”, she said.

The Brdo-Brijuni process was first held in 2013 on a joint initiative of the presidents of the Republic of Slovenia and the Republic of Croatia, in Brdo near Kranj, Slovenia.

Zaev: 27th of April was a shameful day for the country, we’ve shown that we are not like that

Skopje, 25 April, 2018 - 16:52 (META) 

On the occasion that marks the anniversary of the violence that took place in Parliament on April 27, Prime Minister Zoran Zaev said it was shameful for the citizens and the state, and “we should learn to never repeat it”.

When asked if he believed there should be a legal settlement for the case, he added that the individuals who had committed a crime before the law would be brought before the justice system, in accordance with the evidence.

“The public witnessed the whole event and I am convinced that the legal system will not be held back and that it will make a fair and correct ruling. This date should be marked by younger generations, which will send a message that it is not repeated”, said Zaev at today’s press conference in Government, where they signed the UNDP agreement for the annual employment program.

He added that, as a state, we have emerged from this event more serious and cautious, and today, as he pointed out, we send a message to the world that we are ashamed of what happened that day, and that as a people we are not like that, we are a friendly country.

Mogherini asks for responsibility, vision, pragmatism and courage in her address to Parliament

Skopje, 19 April, 2018 - 15:42 (META) 

When I think about the situation of this house a year ago, I can conclude that you have come a long way. The good news is that you are back on the path, you have overcome the worst political and institutional crisis and this is a great achievement to be proud of.

This was stressed by the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Policy, Federica Mogherini, in her address to MPs in Parliament.

She added that a clear recommendation to start negotiations is an achievement not only of the government, but also of all institutions, the president, the parliament, the opposition, all parties, local authorities, civil society and the determination of citizens.

Mogerini stressed that the recommendation means that Brussels has recognized the achievements, but that more unity, more efforts and work will be needed in the future that will be appreciated again.

“You share the resposnability to care for the future of your citizens and the future of the country. The government has the responsibility to involve the opposition, and the opposition has the responsibility to make a contribution. You have an obligation to identify the national priorities that will be priorities for all citizens and you have an obligation to cooperate these priorities. There is no risk of losing anything in the country; what you can lose is not getting results. Your citizens are asking to unite in order to achieve these goals”, said Mogherini.

The EU High Representative expressed her satisfaction that the opposition returned to Parliament and added that the reforms that were adopted should be implemented, maintained and deepened. According to her, the government has taken good steps to deepen bilateral relations and expressed the hope that the talks with Greece will be finally resolved.

“Responsibility, vision, pragmatism and courage are and will be needed. It’s time to start running, running together, running with each other and with your neighbors and I’m convinced that with such a race you will get far”, added Mogherini.

First debate on vote of (no) confidence in Zoran Zaev’s Government to be held tomorrow

Skopje, 10 April, 2018 - 13:07 (META) 

Parliament on its website has published the VMRO-DPMNE’s request for a Vote of no Confidence in the Government, and Parliament Speaker Talat Xhaferi confirmed that the debate will take place tomorrow.

“The only projects implemented by the SDSM and DUI Government in the recent past period has been the politicization of the institutions and their degradation, a captive judiciary, self-indulgence luxuries by government officials with the public’s money and political revenge”, the opposition party said in their request for a Vote of no Confidence in the Government, signed by 41 MPs from VMRO-DPMNE.

The document states that the SDSM and DUI in order to maintain the coalition have trampled all over, not only the country’s democracy, but also the Constitution, the laws, and Parliament’s Rules of Procedures. Also they forced their vote on the Law on Languages, and at the same time failed to implement any reform from Plan 3-6-9, which, they say, suffered a complete collapse.

Parliament Speaker Talat Xhaferi, with SMS messages, texted MPs confirmation that a debate on a vote of no confidence in the Government will take place tomorrow.

VMRO-DPMNE leader Hristijan Mickoski said he expected the Parliament to pass a no-confidence motion against the government and to organize early parliamentary elections.

“I expect at the end of the day that a Vote of no Confidence will be passed in the Government, and we can see further how we will develop the Republic of Macedonia, and organize early parliamentary elections and everything that goes along with it”, Miskovski said.

According to the parliamentary Rules of Procedure, the Parliamentary vote of no confidence will be after the expiration of three days from whence the motion was proposed.

Required for a vote of No Confidence to succeed is a majority of 61 from the total number of MPs.

VMRO-DPMNE will return to Parliament and file vote of no-confidence against the Government

Skopje, 2 April, 2018 - 14:29 (META) 

At yesterday’s Central Committee, the opposition VMRO-DPMNE decided to return to Parliament, said leader of the party, Hristijan Mickoski.

He announced that after returning to Parliament, VMRO-DPMNE would be filing a vote of no-confidence against Prime Minister Zoran Zaev’s Government.

“The first step of VMRO-DPMNE’s parliamentary group will be to raise a no-confidence vote against the government, because what we have seen so far, is a government that has lost credibility, a government that does not work for the citizens and pushes the country into abyss. MPs from VMRO-DPMNE will detail why this anti-peoples’ government should be leave as soon as possible. The sooner the better for the state. This criminal government will be remembered as the most incompetent ever since the independence of the Republic of Macedonia”, said Mickoski.

He reiterated that negotiations on reform laws have entered the final phase and that an agreement on the majority of laws has been reached, as well as that many of their objections on the laws have been accepted.

“After the full finalization which I hope will be ready in the upcoming days, we will insist on getting written guarantees”, says Mickoski.

The court returns Chavkov and four others accused of the attack on Parliament to prison

Skopje, 29 March, 2018 - 13:31 (META) 

Mitko Chavkov, the former director of the Public Security Bureau , Goran Gjoshevski, from the security of the former Parliament Speaker, Trajko Veljanovski, Dushko Lazarov and Oliver Popovski from the Ministry of Interior and Munir Pepic from the Intelligence Agency, were all re-arrested and transferred to the Shutka Investigative Prison regarding the violent events which took place in Parliament last year.

The Criminal Council partially accepted the Prosecution’s request for organized crime and corruption charges, which were filed yesterday against 30 people for the violence which took place in Parliament, on 27 April, last year. They also demanded that the defendants be returned to custody and house arrest, after they were released.

Chavkov and the other four defendants were given 30-day sentences, although they were released into house arrest on Thursday after being charged with the attack on Parliament on April 27, last year, in which several MPs, journalists and citizens were injured.

According to the indictment issued by the Prosecution yesterday, 28 people are being charged for causing a terrorist threat to the constitutional order and security, and two people are charged with aiding and abetting for the same crime.

VMRO-DPMNE reacted to the new arrests saying that “the torture and the perpetuation by Zoran Zaev and the authorities regarding the detained patriots exceeds all limits”.