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    Newly Elected Macedonian MP Demands Mandate to Form Gov't

    © AFP 2019 / Robert ATANASOVSKI
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    Talat Dzaferi, the newly elected speaker of the Macedonian parliament, demanded on Tuesday that President Gjorge Ivanov give a mandate to form a government within 10 days and warned that a refusal to do so would be considered a crime by the parliament.

    BELGRADE (Sputnik) — Dzaferi noted that if the president did not submit a mandate, the parliament could initiate his impeachment. The process, however, requires a two-thirds majority from parliament, the speaker mentioned, adding that this was something which is currently lacking.

    "If President Ivanov does not give a mandate to the parliamentary majority to form a government within a 10-day period, we will regard it as a crime. He is obliged to do so, since the constitution and the legislation do not stipulate this lack of action," Dzaferi told the Croatian HRT channel.

    Commenting on his position, Dzaferi said that he was a legitimate speaker of the Macedonian parliament, as he received a majority vote in parliament on April 27.

    On Thursday, clashes broke out inside and outside the Macedonian parliament building after Dzaferi, an ethnic Albanian, was elected speaker of the parliament. The protesters forced their way into the building, attacking several opposition lawmakers and blocking others.

    The political crisis in Macedonia grew worse after December 2016 early parliamentary elections resulted in Macedonia’s conservative VMRO-DPMNE party and opposition Social Democratic Union of Macedonia (SDSM) party winning 51 and 49 seats, respectively, thus failing to form a coalition government. The SDSM party leader Zoran Zaev agreed to form a coalition majority with the parties representing ethnic Albanians, while the country's president refused to give him a mandate to form a government.

    In an open letter addressed to world leaders, Ivanov justified his position by the fact that the SDSM platform envisaged significant changes to the constitution in favor of Albanian minority, what would undermine the sovereignty of Macedonia.


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