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Macedonia

PM Zaev announces snap general election on April 12

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Prime Minister Zoran Zaev has called a snap general election for April 12, following the late Sunday’s meeting of political party leaders hosted by President Stevo Pendarovski.

He said the Social Democrats [SDSM] had suggested the elections to be held on December 22 or 29, but the largest opposition party had insisted on a 100-day technical government prior to elections.

“Under such circumstances, the political leaders struck a deal on early parliamentary elections to be held on April 12,” PM Zaev said.

“The Przino government [caretaker government] will be in power 100 days before elections. The caretaker prime minister will chair the technical government from January 3 till completion of the election process,” the prime minister said.

“We also have an opportunity to discuss eventual change of electoral system. It is acceptable for SDSM to have one constituency [single electoral unit], but we need to listen to other political parties as well. It is important to take a step forward towards democratization,” Zaev told the reporters.

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Macedonia

Arrest warrant issued for Spasov

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Former special police officer Igor Spasov, who has been sentenced to 14 years in prison for murdering Martin Neskoski, is wanted on recall to prison after going missing.

Macedonian police issued an arrest warrant on Tuesday after he failed to show up to begin his sentence. The arrest warrant has been published on the web-site of the Ministry of Interior.

The former member of special police force vanished after ignoring summons to serve time after he was sentenced in prison on murder charges.

The man had probably fled justice to avoid serving a 14-year jail sentence for a murder conviction. He was to report to Idrizovo correctional facility on 18 October.

The murder took place during a late-night celebration of VMRO-DPMNE’s victory in 2011 parliamentary elections.

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Macedonia

Matthew Palmer due in Skopje today

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The US Secretary of State’s Special Representative for the Western Balkans, Matthew Palmer, will visit North Macedonia on Tuesday.

Special Representative Palmer is scheduled to meet with Foreign Minister Nikola Dimitrov, Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a press release.

The two are expected to discuss the bilateral relations between North Macedonia and the United States, including the US support for the country’s integration into the Euro-Atlantic community. They will exchange views on the situation in the country and the region.

In late August, the U.S. State Department appointed Deputy Assistant Secretary Palmer as special envoy for the Western Balkans with a mandate to help integrate the region into Western institutions.

US Secretary of State has appointed Deputy Assistant Secretary Matthew Palmer  as his Special Representative for the Western Balkans.  In this role, Palmer will lead our efforts to strengthen U.S. diplomatic engagement in support of peace, stability, and prosperity in the region and focus on integration of the Western Balkan countries into Western institutions.

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Macedonia

Zaev: We can give argument to reassure Macron

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We can give arguments to reassure President Macron that “methodology prior to enlargement” proposal could be converted into “enlargement along with change in methodology”, Prime Minister Zoran Zaev wrote on his Facebook page, alluding to France’s Emmanuel Macron’s initiative for new enlargement methodology.

“We are not only a strategic interest, we are Europe. It means we will become a member of the European Union once we wrap up the comprehensive reform at home. The pre-accession process and closure of chapters will help us make it happen. The accession negotiations will help us wrap up domestic reform,” Zaev wrote on his Facebook page.

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