Comment 09 Dec 16

Macedonia’s Election Risks Emboldening Other Strongmen

If Macedonia’s ruling VMRO DPMNE party wins the December elections, anti-democratic forces in Southeastern Europe will have received an encouraging boost.

Florian Bieber
BIRN
Graz
A man walks past election posters of Nikola Gruevski, the leader of the ruing VMRO-DPMNE party, displayed along a street in Skopje. Photo: Boris Grdanoski/AP

The wiretapping scandal in Macedonia has revealed an alarming picture of “state capture”, to borrow the term that the European Commission used in its most recent report.

The leadership of the ruling party VMRO-DPMNE and its coalition partner, the Democratic Union for Integration, DUI, have taken control of Macedonian state, undermined the freedom of the media, the independence of the judiciary and basic democratic processes. Except for hard-core party activists, these revelations are beyond dispute.

The EU-appointed expert group under the competent leadership of Reinhard Priebe noted: “Essential standards of democratic governance have to be met.” To be clear, Macedonia under this ruling party is not a functioning democracy.

The coming general elections are not just part of the process leading out of the crisis but a referendum of sorts on the current situation.

Subscribe to Balkan Insight Premium to read the full article.

Please login to your account below if you are already a Premium Subscriber.

Buy Premium Subscription

Our Premium Service gives you full access to all content published on BalkanInsight.com, including analyses, investigations, comments, interviews and more. Choose your subscription today and get unparalleled in-depth coverage of the Western Balkans.

Buy Premium Subscription

If you have trouble logging in or any other questions regarding you account, please contact us

Talk about it!

blog comments powered by Disqus

Premium Selection

why-serbian-presidents-rule-like-milosevic-04-28-2017
25 May 17

Why Serbian Presidents Rule like Milosevic

When Aleksandar Vucic takes over the presidency, he will be able to wield much more power than the job provides, just like his predecessors Slobodan Milosevic and Boris Tadic.

who-is-who-in-the-kosovo-elections-05-23-2017
24 May 17

Who is Who in the Kosovo Elections

Balkan Insight provides a brief description of all the parties and coalitions competing in the June general elections.