Commissioner Hahn in Skopje to meet with party leaders

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EU enlargement negotiations Johannes Hahn is set to begin meetings with the leaders of the political parties in Macedonia that signed the agreement in June / July last year, as inform from his office to remind them on the responsibility that they have to implement this Agreement including the need to ensure conditions for credible elections, in accordance with the already agreed deadlines, reports MIA.

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Hahn, it is said in the statement, will remind on the importance of the implementation of urgent reform priorities that the Commission has issued for Macedonia, which the Macedonian political leaders also committed themselves.

– January 15th is the key deadline of the political agreement, whose implementation is important, both for the Government and the citizens of the country. I expect that the outstanding elements of the political agreement will be resolved before or during my visit, allowing the election authorities to organize credible elections according to the agreed timetable”, it is written in the statement.

The arrival of Hahn coincides with the deadline for fulfillment of the obligation under the Agreement for selection of Technical Government with new interim Prime Minister, whose sole task will be to conduct elections scheduled for 24 of April this year.

It is expected today in Skopje to meet with Prime Minister and VMRO-DPMNE leader Nikola Gruevski, SDSM leader Zoran Zaev, DUI leader Ali Ahmeti and Menduh Thachi. The meetings in this format were held previously, were attended by the Ambassador Orav and US Ambassador Jess Bailey.

Yesterday, however, at the Club of Deputies resumed talks with mediator Peter Vanhoutte with representatives of political parties on issues related to media and the Rules on methodology for updating the voter list and the Rules on methodology for full access, performance of changes and deleting data in the Voters’ List and the procedure for conducting spot checks for his update. Vanhoutte stated that negotiations will take place until Agreement is reached on these topics.

A kind of forerunner of the Hahn was the visit of MEP Ivo Vajgl, Richard Howitt and Eduard Kukan at the beginning of the week, which sought to encourage political parties to accelerate the adoption of the obligations from the Agreement.

The troika from the European Parliament, which was mediating the efforts to reach the agreement from Przhino after two days of intensive meetings and talks in Skopje, appealed to all parties concerned, not to save on time and effort for rapid implementation of all the key issues from the Agreement from Przhino.

– We strongly urge representatives of all political parties not to save on time and effort in implementing the Agreement from Przhino and urgent reforms. We emphasize that this is political priority, which is necessary for the country to overcome the political crisis. Full commitment and focus of all political parties to the remaining steps from Agreement is crucial. Therefore, we encourage all parties to act quickly and to prepare the voter list with harmonized methodology due to credible level of field checks and taking steps to promote media freedom, stressed the three MEPs in the joint statement.

Vajgl, Howitt and Kukan met with the leaders of SDSM Zoran Zaev, DUI leader Ali Ahmeti and Menduh Thaci. They discussed with senior representatives from VMRO-DPMNE because the leader of this party and Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski was visiting the United States. They held meetings with members of the SEC, the Special Public Prosecutor and representatives of civil society.