The European Union has canceled mediation talks on resolving the political crisis in Macedonia after that country's main political opposition declined to take part.
The EU mediators had invited Macedonian political leaders for talks with Johannes Hahn, commissioner for European neighborhood policy and enlargement negotiations, and three members of the European Parliament in Vienna on April 21.
EU mediators said in a statement that they regretted that Macedonia's main parties could not agree to meet to discuss the country's political crisis and said they were now forced to consider unspecified "further actions."
"We deeply regret retrograde steps that move the country further away from its aspirations towards European Union accession," the statement said.
Macedonia's opposition said it will not join the talks until the government postpones elections and withdraws a controversial amnesty for politicians suspected of corruption.
President Gjorge Ivanov’s amnesty decision has sparked a series of street protests calling for his resignation.
The protests continued on April 21, with thousands of people taking to the streets of Skopje and other Macedonian towns once again to show their support for the opposition.
Based on reporting by Reuters and AFP