It is very important to determine the responsibility for the illegal wiretapping and alleged government misconduct, because it will be a key step for Macedonia to reassure NATO and the European Union, as well as other international partners, that it is ready to integrate into those organizations. This was pointed out by Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, Hoyt Bryan Yee, in an interview with Alsat-M’s 360 degree TV program.

“It is an important step reassuring the people of Macedonia that the rule of law has been established and respected and strengthened. We call on all actors, political parties, political and government leaders, members of Parliament, to do all they can to ensure that justice is done, the rule of law is observed, the Special Prosecutor is given the support necessary to do its job and that there is not political pressure or political influence over the prosecutors and judges, those involved in establishing accountability. I agree it’s important that this be done in a timely manner and that it not drag on for a long time”, said Hoyt Yee.

According to him, it is crucial for Macedonia to make the necessary reforms in the judiciary, which will allow an independent judiciary, free of political pressure.

“It is important not only for the citizens of Macedonia, but for the country’s future for integration into NATO and the EU, but also for attracting foreign investors”, emphasized Yee.

Regarding the power-opposition relationship, he says that Macedonia can not afford the luxury of permanent delays and obstructions by political parties who disagree with the government. According to Hoyt Yee, every democracy needs a strong government, but also a strong opposition that will not only block proposals that it disagrees with, but also offers alternatives.

In his interview, he also touched on Russia’s influence in the Western Balkan region. According to him, Macedonia should resist Russian influence and misinformation or other sources arriving from Moscow.

“We see that Russia is trying to discourage the accession of countries in the Western Balkans to NATO and the EU. We believe it is very important and a matter of principle that countries in the Western Balkans or anywhere, have the right to chose their own security alliances, and have the right to chose their futures and no country should have a veto, and that is a principle we are defending, to help Macedonia, Montenegro and Bosnia Herzegovina. It is important that Macedonia, working with us, with the EU and with partners in the region, to continue to resist malignant influences from whatever source it might be, that they continue to try and strengthen the independent media, it is important to have a strong, free, independent and proffessional media that will resist misinformation from Russia or other sources”, said Hoyt Yee.