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Macedonian Protests Against Forming New Government In 43rd Day

Protesters in Skopje
Protesters in Skopje

Protesters took to the streets of Skopje for a 43rd day of protests on April 10 holding shields made of cardboard to symbolize their proclaimed goal to protect the country from being ruled by a coalition of Social Democrats and ethnic Albanians.

Led by a line of women, children, and older people holding the paper shields painted with the national colors red and yellow, the protesters marched from the Government building to the parliament demanding new elections and rejecting the coalition partners' plans to institute Albanian as the country's second language.

The ruling VMRO-DPMNE party for weeks has successfully blocked the coalition from forming a new government and electing a speaker of parliament.

The protesters have lionized as a hero President Gjorge Ivanov for having refused to give the coalition a mandate to form a new government, even though it holds a majority in parliament.

The United States and European Union have called on the VMRO to stop its obstruction tactics, which have prolonged the country's longrunning political crisis.

European Commission spokesperson, Maja Kocijancic said on April 10 that a new Macedonian government "must be established without further delay based on the parliamentary majority that is there."

Based on reporting by RFE/RL's Balkan Service and Balkan

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