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EU Pushes Macedonia on Inquiry Commission

May 10, 2013

The EU ambassador, Aivo Orav, has urged Macedonia to hurry up with forming a commission of inquiry into the events in parliament on December 24, which triggered a prolonged political crisis.

Sinisa Jakov Marusic, Balkan Insight, 08.05.2013

 

EU Ambassador to Macedonia Aivo Orav

Orav said that the country should not delay formation of the commission, agreed as part of an EU-brokered deal struck on March 1 that ended a months-long political crisis.

“A lot has been done,” since March 1, Orav said on Tuesday. “The opposition took part in the local elections and returned to parliament…

“But the commission dealing with the December 24 events has still not been established and a memorandum of understanding between political parties has not been signed yet,” Orav said.

His remarks come after much delay in the formation of the five-member commission that is to be comprised of political party representatives and experts and supervised by the European Union.

The EU-brokered deal struck on March 1 ended a months-long political crisis in the country, which began on December 24, when the government parties passed a budget for 2013 in only minutes, after opposition MPs and journalists were expelled from the chamber.

Weeks of street protests followed, along with a boycott of parliament and an opposition threat to boycott the recently finished local elections.

In March, President Gjorge Ivanov said that the commission, which is to operate under his patronage, should be operational within two weeks. However, there have been delays since then due to the prolonged political negotiation between the government and opposition.

Macedonia’s ruling VMRO DPMNE party has so far proposed two of its MPs, former judge Blagorodna Dulic and Ilija Dimovski. The opposition Social Democrats, SDSM, have proposed two Skopje law professors, Renata Deskovska and Ljubomir Frckoski.

Media speculate that the commission might be formed in the next few days and that unofficially, both sides agreed over the last open issue of who will preside over the body.

Speculation is that both sides agreed to appoint the long-standing anti-corruption fighter Slagjana Taseva as the commission’s head. Taseva on Tuesday neither denied nor confirmed these allegations.

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