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Interview 17 Mar 17

Teuta Arifi: People Were Against Alliance with VMRO DPMNE

The vice-president of the biggest Albanian party in Macedonia, the Democratic Union for Integration, says a new coalition with Nikola Gruevski’s party was never a realistic option.

Vlado Apostoliv
BIRN
Tetovo
Teuta Arifi. Photo: BIRN

Talking about possible plans of the new opposition-led parliamentary majority after President Ivanov refused it a mandate to form a government, DUI vice-president Arifi, who is also a mayor of Tetovo, says the DUI’s “plan B is the same as plan A, which is for President Ivanov to award the mandate” to the opposition Social Democrat leader, Zoran Zaev.

Zaev has the support in parliament of the DUI and two other ethnic Albanian parties but has been refused the mandate after the President said the Albanian demands he had accepted posed a danger to the country’s unity and integrity.

Arifi said the priority now in Macedonia was a peaceful and institutional transition of power without any hasty decisions on either side.

“Our position is that Ivanov should decide absolutely rationally. Parliament should be constituted and the speaker should request the mandate from the President who should award it within a ten-day period,” Arifi insisted.

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