Bitola, Macedonia – On February 2nd 2008, Slavko Mangovski, a U.S. citizen, who is also a Macedonian citizen, carrying a US passport was denied entry to Greece at the Macedonia-Greece border crossing point of Medjitlia – Nikki even though Greece does not require visas for individuals with U.S. passports. This is not the first time that Mr. Mangovski has been denied entry to Greece. In addition, many Greek citizens with Macedonian heritage who fled Greece in 1948 during the Greek Civil War are continually being denied entry to Greece. Although almost 60 years have passed since these aged refugees evacuated their homes, they still can not see their birthplace again.
For unspecified reasons, Greece continues to selectively blacklist Macedonians who are active in human rights organizations, journalists or the said refugees. This latest reported incident involving Mr. Mangovski, has baffled many organizations. The UMD has obtained a copy of Mr. Mangovski’s passport where it can be seen that the Greek border crossing officer attached a form and stated that he “is a person for whom an alert has been issued for the purposes of refusing entry” and is “in the national register”.
”I’ve been blacklisted for calling on Greece to respect the rights of its Macedonian minority. It is outrageous that the European Union allows this to go on”, said Slavko Mangovski.
“Greece is consistently allowed to persecute its ethnic minorities, ignore European Court of Human Rights rulings, and discriminate against anybody who denounces its systematic racism. The European Union must finally make clear to Greece the consequences of its actions” said the president of Macedonian Human Rights Movement International Bill Nicholov.