WASHINGTON, D.C. – February 6, 2009 – The United Macedonian Diaspora (UMD) categorically condemns Sofia mayor Boyko Borisov’s recent statements in Chicago advocating an effective “buyout” of Macedonia by Bulgarians to ensure “friendly relations” between the two states. “Such a statement by a leading politician of an EU and NATO member is deeply troubling and reveals a fundamental ignorance of the principles on which both organizations were founded,” stated UMD President, Metodija A. Koloski. Plans to effect a “buyout” of Macedonia by Bulgarians violate one of the EU’s most important principles, “promoting respect for the principles of independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity and the inviolability of borders.” They are tantamount to economic extortion, not unlike the 1995 embargo that Greece imposed on Macedonia to create a “friendly atmosphere” among Macedonians.
UMD regards Mr. Borisov’s reasoning that Bulgaria, through economic and political isolation, will foster “friendly relations” with Macedonians as laughable on its face, if not dangerously mischievous. Although the UMD deplores Mr. Borisov’s remarks, the United Macedonian Diaspora promotes and encourages friendly, positive and mutually productive relations between the Republic of Bulgaria and the Republic of Macedonia.
UMD believes that Mr. Borisov’s stated goal of friendly ties would best be achieved not through economic extortion and enforced “bulgarianization” of Macedonia’s economy, but rather through the prompt registration of OMO-Ilinden PIRIN (Political Party of the Macedonian Minority in Bulgaria) as a legitimate political party representing ethnic Macedonians in Bulgaria. “Rather than resort to economic extortion, the Republic of Bulgaria would be well advised to recognize the sizable Macedonian minority in Bulgaria. And rather than ignore the very founding principles of NATO and the EU, the Republic of Bulgaria might even wish to issue a formal apology for the deportation of nearly 9,000 Macedonian Jews to Hitler’s death camps,” added Koloski.
As a final gesture of genuine friendship toward Macedonian citizens, the United Macedonian Diaspora would urge the Republic of Bulgaria to consider ending its support of subversive elements within Macedonian civil society that seek to deny the existence of a unique, separate and distinct Macedonian ethnicity, language and nation.
Founded in 2004, United Macedonian Diaspora (UMD) is the leading international non-governmental organization addressing the interests and needs of Macedonians and Macedonian communities throughout the world.
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