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Zaev: Our country strives for one-society national strategy concept

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A public consultation on drawing up a national strategy for development of concept of one society and interculturalism in the Republic of Macedonia, held Monday under the Government’s auspices, brought together scores of civil organizations’ representatives.

Prime Minister Zoran Zaev and Justice Minister Renata Deskoska delivered address to the attendees of the event, organized by the Government as part of its commitment of drawing up a national strategy for common society and cross-community dialogue.

“A diverse society is the actual advantage. Embracing diversity in our society leads to greater social coherence and well-being. Diversity is our common wealth, and therefore, it is of utmost importance that the strategy becomes viable instrument to prevent or mitigate the risk of dominance of ethnocentric culture,” PM Zaev said.

“Ethnocentrism is not the model our country is striving for. The model of the Republic of Macedonia begins with a respect for all communities. Such model calls for creation of a state in which the various communities will cooperate, complement and enrich each other,” he added.

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Macedonia

Healthcare workers stage protest over workplace assaults

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Medical professionals in Skopje have rallied to protest over growing safety concerns at work after  doctors and nurses were assaulted.

Scores of healthcare workers gathered Wednesday at the yard of Clinics Center (hospital compound) during their 30-minute break Wednesday, to protest against what they see as unprecedented violence by patients and patients’ relatives.

The protesting doctors claim workplace violence is a serious phenomenon in health care settings. The healthcare workers are at high risk of such violence, they say, urging the authorities to immediately address the frequency of physical violence against health personnel.

Leadership of Clinics Center unionists called on the union members to join the “Stop Violence Against Violence” protest in high numbers.

The unionists say the violence against healthcare personnel [doctors and nurses] is reminiscence of past, but warn that “the incumbent minister of health Venko Filipce did nothing to prevent it”.

Workplace violence is referred to any incident or situation in which a person in his workplace or work-related circumstances is subjected to mistreatment, threats, or aggression. Over the past nine months, there were 15 physical assaults on healthcare workers, of which two occurred last week.

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Macedonia

Corruption watchdog calls for cancelling lease contract for premises of ex-presidents Ivanov and Crvenkovski

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The National Anti-Corruption Commission has requested termination of the lease or rental agreement between the government and two former presidents, Gjorgje Ivanov and Branko Crvenkovski.

“We hereby inform you that at its 22nd meeting, the National Commission for Prevention of Corruption decided on a case launched on its own initiative regarding the rights and privileges enjoyed by former heads of state after leaving the office,” corruption watchdog said in the press release Tuesday.

“Today’s decisions apply to all former presidents and the request to terminate the leases applies to both former presidents,” it adds.

Both former President Gjorge Ivanov and his predecessor Branko Crvenkovski enjoy executive privileges. In addition to rental (leased premises), the state covers the salaries of three employees of Ivanov and Crvenkovski. Furthermore, they are provided with state vehicle and a driver.

The Anti-Corruption Commission says it will urge the Government’s Office for General Affairs to terminate the lease agreement for premises of the former presidents. They are currently entitled to leased premises after expiration of the term of office.

In a comment of Commission’s decision, former head of state Gjorgje Ivanov says Commission’s chairperson Biljana Ivanovska is manipulating the public. He claims the price of leased premises is EUR 1.950 per month. The Commission, on the other hand, claims the monthly rent price is EUR 4.500.

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Macedonia

Butikofer calls on EU to open accession talks with North Macedonia

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European Greens Co-Chair Reinhard Butikofer in a post on Twitter welcomed the remarks by President of European Council Donald Tusk after his meeting with Macedonian officials during a visit to Skopje.

“Tusk is right in calling for opening EU membership talks with North Macedonia: EU must now do its share, as Tusk said, because North Macedonia has already done its share,” Reinhard Butikofer, a Member of the European Parliament (Greens/EFA) and Co-Chair of the European Green Party (EGP), tweeted on Tuesday.

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