UMD Inquiry on Statues in Macedonia Dedicated to Nazi Collaborators

The United Macedonian Diaspora (UMD), the largest Macedonian educational advocacy organization in the world, sent a letter of inquiry today to U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo urging him to direct the U.S. Embassy in Skopje to conduct an inquiry into two statues in western Macedonia dedicated to known Nazi collaborators and seek their immediate removal by Macedonian authorities.

The statues are dedicated to Xhem Hasa and Aqif Krosi Recani, commanders of the Balli Kombetar, a collaborator of Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy, which occupied western Macedonia during World War II. The Hasa statue was unveiled in the village of Simnica, Macedonia in 2006, and the Recani statue in the village of Recan, Macedonia in 2015, both by local authorities belonging to the political party the Democratic Union for Integration, which were in coalition with the conservative government in power at the time and currently, with the social democrat government.

The full letter is below:

December 23, 2019

Secretary Michael R. Pompeo
U.S. Department of State
2201 C Street NW
Washington, D.C. 20520

Re: Inquiry on Statues in Macedonia Dedicated to Nazi Collaborators

On behalf of the United Macedonian Diaspora (UMD), as the leading organization representing our nation’s estimated half a million Americans of Macedonian heritage, I am writing to call your attention to two statues in Macedonia dedicated to known Nazi World War II collaborators, and request for your directing the U.S. Embassy in Skopje to conduct an inquiry into two statues in western Macedonia dedicated to known Nazi collaborators, and seek their immediate removal by Macedonian authorities.

The statues are dedicated to Xhem Hasa and Aqif Krosi Recani, commanders of the Balli Kombetar, a collaborator of Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy, which occupied western Macedonia during World War II. The Hasa statue was unveiled in the village of Simnica, Macedonia in 2006, and the Recani statue in the village of Recan, Macedonia in 2015, both by local authorities belonging to the political party the Democratic Union for Integration, which were in coalition with the conservative government in power at the time and currently, with the social democrat government.

The statues are offensive to the Macedonian people who defeated Hitler’s Armies and their Balli Kombetar Albanian proxies. Such statues are banned in Germany and across the European Union. They would not be tolerated in the United States and go against the very values we espouse as Americans.

We hope for a positive response from your office as to the inquiry and the immediate removal of these statues by Macedonian authorities.

I wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Sincerely,

Metodija A. Koloski
President

Statue to Nazi collaborator Xhem Hasa