Analysis 26 Jan 17

Macedonian Party Turns Screws on Soros-Funded NGOs

The ruling VMRO DPMNE party's new campaign against Soros-funded NGOs - accusing them of being ‘foreign mercenaries’ - is taking a threatening turn.

Sinisa Jakov Marusic
BIRN
Skopje
VMRO DPMNE leader, Nikola Gruevski. Photo: MIA

Milenko Nedelkovski, host of a controversial talk show and a leading VMRO DPMNE party supporter, this weekend published the addresses of several prominent critics of Macedonia’s government on his Facebook profile.

Their home addresses were published along with a photo of a notorious figure from Macedonia’s history, Andon Kjoseto, known for assassinating people who were called traitors to the cause of Macedonian freedom from Ottoman rule.

The photograph showed a statue of Kjoseto holding a knife. “The picture is not coincidental,” Nedelkovski wrote ominously, listing the names and addresses of the columnist Branko Trickovski, the journalist Saso Ordanovski, the law professor Ljubomir Frckoski, the human rights activist Mirjana Najcevska, two journalists, Branko Geroski and Aco Kabranov, and Vladimir Milcin, the former head of the Foundation Open Society - Macedonia.

These people are just some of many who have been accused of being “foreign mercenaries” after Nikola Gruevski, leader of the VMRO DPMNE party, launched his campaign against NGOs that receive funds from abroad, adding that if he won power once again, his government would “fight for the de-Soros-isation of the country”, referring to organisations actually or allegedly funded by billionaire financier George Soros.

VMRO DPMNE press releases issued this month state that the Soros-funded Open Society Foundation - Macedonia as well as the main opposition Macedonian Social Democratic Union, SDSM, are the “undertakers of Macedonia’s democracy”, as built by Gruevski, and are “Soros puppets”, “mercenary revolutionaries”, “enemies of free journalism” and a “disgrace and a disaster for Macedonia”.

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