After today’s meeting at the Holiday Inn hotel in Skopje between with Prime Minister and SDSM President Zoran Zaev, leader of the Alliance of the Albanians (AA), Zijadin Sela, stated that they have reached an agreement and that MPs from his party will vote for the changes to the Constitution.
He said that due to the Alliance’s insistence, the separation of citizens will be removed in the Preamble.
“The meeting was in the spirit of agreement and compromise. We discussed the requests that the Alliance of Albanians have made. I can gladly confirm today and I hope it will continue over the next few days and with the vote in Parliament, that starting from today, we shall not have two categories of citizens as it was until now. Therefore, there will no longer be “citizens, like others” but only citizens and will continue with the Macedonian nation, part of the Albanian nation, the Turkish nation etc. I say this with pleasure that as a party we have contributed to all citizens for better representation, so that more of them feel equal with all other citizens. The AA supports the idea that Macedonia should become a member of NATO and EU. On the other hand, there are things in which we generally agree, but we need to find ways to accomplish that. We, as the AA will not abandon our demand that the Albanian language be defined as the Albanian language and not as an “other language”. We still haven’t reached an agreement or a compromise on this issue,” said Sela
Prime Minister Zaev also expressed his satisfaction an agreement was reached and confirmed that some words from the preamble will be deleted, so it doesn’t give the impression that certain citizens are only here temporarily.
“I want to express my satisfaction on the constructive talks we had and the sensitivity that the Alliance of Albanians has shown towards the Macedonian nation. Among the draft amendments, the AA’s proposal has been accepted in order to remove the words such as” that live within the borders” so it does not look as if citizens of nationalities such as Albanians, Roma, Vlachs are only here temporarily. Today, we removed the other “citizens” because technically it is a repetition, as “citizens” is stated twice. This way, we are making everyone be equal in the eyes of the constitution. Now the preamble will state “the Macedonian nation and part of the Albanian nation, part of the Turkish nation, etc” said Zaev.