May 3, 2010 – Washington, D.C. – The United Macedonian Diaspora (UMD) strongly condemns the recent re-emergence of violent extremist groups purporting to represent the interests of certain segments of Macedonian society.
Following a shootout with Macedonian police near the Blace border crossing between Macedonia and Kosovo, a statement from the “National Liberation Army” emerged claiming responsibility. This despicable act is even more disappointing following statements by officials from the USA, EU, OSCE, and NATO discouraging separatist rhetoric.
UMD urges the Macedonian government to fully investigate the incident, and urges relevant state institutions in Kosovo, as well as KFOR, to cooperate with Macedonian police to apprehend the perpetrators of this most recent aggression against the Macedonian state.
Macedonia is an inclusive state with a legal framework that guarantees unprecedented rights in Southeast Europe for multiple minority groups in all segments of society. This is why acts of violence committed by extremists and extremist groups claiming that they are fighting for the “interests of a minority group,” in this case the Albanian are unfounded and should only be seen as actions by violent criminals that fight only for their own self interest, profit and against the well-being of the Macedonian state.
UMD strongly supports the integration of all segments of Macedonian society and condemns discrimination against any person for any reason. Furthermore, UMD urges all groups to work within Macedonian legal frameworks to address and resolve any grievances.