diplomatic bulletin - Macedonian Information Centre

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diplomatic bulletin - Macedonian Information Centre
Diplomatic Bulletin
Climate change, financing for development, the Millennium Development Goals, management
reform and counter-terrorism should all receive priority attention from the General Assembly over
the next year, said incoming president Dr. Srgjan Kerim at the
opening of the 62nd Session of the General Assembly of the United Nations.
MFA MEETS visa center responsibilitIES
Interview with Mr. Jasmin Kahil,
Director for Organizational Affairs at the MFA
No. 10 / September 2007
Independence Day Celebrated at
Macedonian Embassies
EDITORIAL
Diplomatic News
An Autumn for a
Decisive Step Ahead
PRESIDENT CRVENKOVSKI AT
62nd UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY
The Republic of Macedonia is entering the key
period of the process of its integration into the EU
and NATO. The speed of our European and Euro-Atlantic integration will largely depend on the country’s
achievements this autumn.
Macedonian President Branko Crvenkovski addressed the 62nd
UN General Assembly in the second half of September this year.
Crvenkovski met with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. Deputy
Foreign Minister Zoran Petrov was also a member of this delegation.
We are all aware of the tasks and responsibilities
facing us in the coming period, and also of the fact
that minutely precise moves will have to be taken considering how short of time we are. This is all the more
so considering that the right steps will have to be taken
on a broader, regional scale. In short, the European
spring of the region depends on the responsible conduct and vision of all the parties involved.
PRIME MINISTER GRUEVSKI MEETS
WITH GENERAL RAY HENAULT
And as far as the achievements of the Republic
of Macedonia are concerned, there are certain truly
encouraging indicators. In the World Bank’s Doing
Business Report, the Republic of Macedonia is ranked
fourth by its reform accomplishments. At the same
time, according to the latest Corruption Perceptions
Index of Transparency International, in fighting corruption and organized crime Macedonia went 20
places up the scale.
These indicators from respectable international
organizations and institutions are the best proof of
Macedonia’s reform capacities, as well as its potential
to make a significant headway in the exact areas where
the country could not boast any notable accomplishments before.
These encouraging indicators impose even more the
need to eliminate the weaknesses that may compromise these reform achievements. This is all the more
relevant now on the eve of the report from the European Commission on the progress of the Republic of
Macedonia. We expect the report this time round, as in
fact before, to objectively present the attained results,
which are not negligible, and to also assume a critical approach of our faults of which we are fully aware.
The Republic of Macedonia has recently presented its
Annual National Program for Membership of NATO
in the Alliance’s headquarters in Brussels, which was
very positively received and encouraged by the NATO
member states. Receiving recommendations in the EC
report that will create conditions for starting accession
talks next year, as well as receiving an invitation for
joining NATO at the Summit in Bucharest are well defined goals for the attainment of which all Macedonia’s
potentials should be harnessed.
In a time highly important for the whole region,
when Kosovo’s status should be finally defined as well,
the Republic of Macedonia has a historical responsibility to take the decisive step ahead not only to realize its
strategic priorities, but also to make a significant contribution to propelling the whole region in the right
direction.
2
MACEDONIAN DIPLOMATIC BULLETIN September, 2007
Nikola Gruevski,
Prime Minister of the
Republic of Macedonia,
met with General Ray
Henault, chairman of
the Military Committee
of NATO, on 20 September. Gruevski, among
other things, voiced his
expectation that the
Republic of Macedonia would receive an invitation for full membership in NATO at the forthcoming Summit in Bucharest. General
Henault expressed gratitude for the Macedonian troops’ participation in the peace missions in Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Middle
East. He assessed positively the progress in the reforms necessary
for Macedonia’s accession to NATO and he encouraged the country
to continue with this progress so that it could achieve the objective:
full membership in NATO.
We would like to give a warm welcome and wish a successful diplomatic mission in the Republic of Macedonia to the Ambassadors:
H.E. Mrs. Clare Birgin, Commonwelth of Australia
H.E. Mr. Zakir Arif oglu Hashimov, Republic of Azerbaijan
H.E. Mr. Hugo Østergaard Andersen, Kingdom of Denmark
H.E. Mr. Elard Escala, Republic of Peru
And to thank the following Ambassadors for their completed
diplomatic mission in the Republic of Macedonia, wishing them
success in their future career:
H.E. Mr. John OLIVER, Commonwelth of Australia
H.E. Mr. Gunnar ORTMANN, Kingdom of Denmark
H.E. Mr. Itaru UMEZU, Japan
Macedonian Diplomatic Bulletin, No. 10 / September 2007
Founded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Macedonia.
Dame Gruev 6, 1000 Skopje, Republic of Macedonia
www.mfa.gov.mk • [email protected]
Editor: Pajo Avirovik
Editorial Board:
Vasile Andonovski
Shpresa Jusufi
Eli Bojadzieska Ristoski
Igor Popovski
Maciej Kaczorowski
Mircela Dzuvalekovska Casule
Photo: Dragan Todorovski
Published by:
MACEDONIAN INFORMATION CENTRE
Translation: Aleksandra Ilievska, Aleksandra Noveska
Director: Dragan Antonov
Address: Naum Naumovski Borce 73,
1000 Skopje, Republic of Macedonia
www.micnews.com.mk
PRESIDENT CRVENKOVSKI MEETS EU
COMMISSIONER OLLI REHN IN BRUSSELS
Macedonian President Branko Crvenkovski met EU Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn in Brussels in early October. They talked about the progress Macedonia should make to
become an EU member state. President Crvenkovski informed
Commissioner Rehn on Macedonia’s achievements, laying
stress on the economic reforms, the business climate improvements, and fighting crime and corruption. Commissioner Rehn
appealed for concrete results in conducting reforms in the police force, public administration and fighting corruption, which
in his view started yielding encouraging results.
With respect to the areas in which reforms are carried out
slowly in Commissioner Rehn’s view, President Crvenkovski
said that the country had both institutional capacity and strong
political will to rectify the situation in the future with concerted
efforts.
“Our ambition to be set a date for starting EU accession talks
in 2008 remains the same and we are ready to meet with great
dedication all criteria in this regard,” President Crvenkovski said.
portant to launch an investigation and overcome the situation
as soon as possible, without any delays whatsoever, so that the
Parliament may focus on conducting reforms.
The two officials also discussed the incidents at the Macedonian Parliament, where Mr. Rehn underlined that it was im-
President Crvenkovski also met with the EU High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy, Javier Solana.
FM MILOSOSKI TAKES PART IN AUTUMN SESSION
OF NATO PARLIAMENTARY ASSEMBLY
In the course of the two-day visit to Reykjavik, Iceland, on
the occasion of the Autumn Session of the Parliamentary Assembly of NATO, Mr. Antonio Milososki, Minister of Foreign
Affairs of the Republic of Macedonia, addressed the Political
Committee of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly on 7 October
2007.
In his speech, MFA Milososki presented the Republic of
Macedonia as a serious candidate for NATO membership,
focusing on the activities and reforms pursued by the Government and the Assembly of the Republic of Macedonia.
He underlined that the executive and legislative authorities
worked hard and with great dedication on the fulfillment of
the required criteria and standards, expecting a membership
invitation at the next Summit in Bucharest. Furthermore, MFA
Milsoski underscored that the Republic of Macedonia had thus
far proven its capacity of sharing the burden and obligations deriving from its partnership relations with NATO, acting as a de
facto NATO member. He stated that the recent Declaration of
the Macedonian Assembly for support of the country’s NATO
membership clearly confirmed the continuity of the political
consensus in the Republic of Macedonia established as early as
the first days of the country’s independence.
At the margins of the session, the Macedonian Foreign
Minister met the President of the Parliamentary Assembly of
NATO, Mr. José Lello, as well as the ten-member delegation of
the US Congress headed by Congressman John Turner. Mr. Besim Dogani, Deputy Speaker of the Macedonian Assembly, also
attended these meetings. MFA Milososki presented the achievements and challenges of the Republic of Macedonia on its way
to NATO membership and the expectations for a membership
invitation at the Bucharest Summit.
All interlocutors, especially the US members of Congress,
reaffirmed their open support for the Republic of Macedonia.
They encouraged the Macedonian Government to continue the
decisive course of reforms in adherence with the Nation Annual
Program for NATO Membership of the Republic of Macedonia
and also expressed appreciation for the hitherto successful contribution of the Republic of Macedonia to the peace operations
abroad, openly presenting their interest that the Republic of
Macedonia soon becomes part of NATO.
MFA Milososki also took part in the discussions at the afternoon session of the Defense Committee of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, at which a Resolution was adopted for support for the NATO membership of aspirant countries.
MACEDONIAN DIPLOMATIC BULLETIN September, 2007
3
Interview with Mr. Jasmin Kahil,
Director for Organizational Affairs at the MFA
MFA MEETS visa
center responsibilitIES
1. As a Director for Organizational Affairs, you have the
responsible job of keeping close control of the financial and
organizational performance of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
(MFA) of the Republic of Macedonia. In that regard, it would
be interesting if you explained to us the manner in which the
recently adopted budget rebalance would reflect on our Ministry’s current operations.
First I have to stress that the entire budget of the MFA for 2007
totals about 20 million euros. Within the budget rebalance debate
we asked for another 3 million euros and were granted 4.2 million euros. However, as much as 2.7 million euros of these funds
are intended for purchasing new buildings abroad for the needs
of the Macedonian Embassies and Consulates. In addition, the
budget rebalance allocation will be used for covering the Macedonian portion of the costs related to the one-year term of H.E.
Dr. Srgjan Kerim, as President of the 62nd Session of the General
Assembly of the United Nations. With such a breakdown of the
budget allocation, we will be forced unfortunately to reduce the
costs within the MFA’s current operations, such as the expenses
for travel, contractual and consulting services, engagement of local staff at the Macedonian Embassies and Consulates, and rent
for the buildings the MFA uses.
2. You mentioned the plans for buying new buildings for
the needs of the MFA. Could you tell us something more about
this project?
As I already said, under the budget rebalance we were granted
2.7 million euros for buying new buildings abroad, which is
enough for purchasing one or two buildings. However, it is my
pleasure to inform you that in the period of 2007-2008, 40 million
euros from the state reserves of the Republic of Macedonia will be
targeted for buying new buildings for the needs of the Macedonian
Embassies and Consulates. To this end a special commission made
up of representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Finance and the Bureau for Public
Procurements has been set up. The commission regularly met in
the course of August, identified the priority countries for buying
new buildings and also made initial evaluation of all the submitted bids. Most of these funds will be used for buying and building
15 embassies in the European capitals, such as London, Moscow,
Rome, Vienna, Stockholm, etc., and construction of an embassy
in Ankara is on the agenda too. According to the timetable, the
buildings in Lubljana and Prague will be bought by the end of this
year, to which end Macedonian representatives have already visited them. Vienna and Istanbul are next on the list.
3. At the moment our Ministry is going through a period of
fluctuation in view of the departures and arrivals of our staff to
and from the Embassies and Consulates. How is in your opinion this process going on?
Over the past few months 10 of our colleagues returned from
their missions and just as many took their place. On this occasion
4
MACEDONIAN DIPLOMATIC BULLETIN September, 2007
I can tell you that over the period to come, a few other notices will
be announced for assorted vacancies at the Embassies and Consulates. At the same time, I would like to stress that the MFA made
all the required preparations to appoint those who returned to
matching work posts in its corresponding directorates. A can also
say that our Embassies and Consulates made considerable savings
and it is also worth mentioning that the financial burden on the
MFA has eased after certain staff of the Embassies and Consulates
were taken over by the line Ministries.
4. Almost a year has passed since you were appointed to the
position of Director for Organizational Affairs. How do you
see this period and what are your greatest achievements?
It was a rather hard and dynamic, but also productive period.
I could list a number of things, which I consider great achievements. Primarily I would underline the realization of the new
organizational structure and the adoption of the new rulebook for
operations of the MFA. It is also worth mentioning the decision
for increasing the salaries of the employees of the Embassies and
Consulates, the first since 1991. I am content that our Ministry
managed to expressly resolve the problem relating to the purchase
of the new diplomatic residence in Brussels. As early as the end
of last year the problem of those working without being reported
with the pension and health insurance funds was resolved. By way
of their employment in the agency for temporary employment
the issue of their years of service and health insurance was finally
dealt with. Over the past 12 months we took on eight persons on
a regular basis, while a few other regular employment competitions are in progress. In addition, through takeovers from other
Ministries and state institutions, the MFA employed seventeen
persons. For a successful wrap-up of these activities, the visa center will be put into practice soon. The MFA fulfilled its responsibility as regards the visa center, which is of great significance in the
process of full liberalization of the visa regime with the EU. The
premises on the eighth floor of the building of the ministry have
been fully adapted to meet its needs, while installation of hardware and software equipment is in progress at the moment. Once
this process is over, the center will become fully operational.
Diplomatic Bulletin
ACQUISITION OF EMBASSIES TO BOLSTER DIPLOMATIC
NETWORK AND IMPROVE IMAGE
SECURITY OF MACEDONIAN DIPLOMATIC
AND CONSULAR MISSIONS
Beginnings of Organizing
Macedonian Embassies and Consulates
CONSULAR AFFAIRS AND DIPLOMACY
ACQUISITION OF EMBASSIES TO BOLSTER DIPLOMATIC
NETWORK AND IMPROVE IMAGE
The Government of the Republic of Macedonia decided to bolster and expand its diplomatic network by acquiring and building buildings for diplomatic missions and consular posts. This
project foresees acquisition and building of 15 buildings, for
which 40 million euros will be set aside. A commission has already been formed for this purpose and its task will be to review
the real estate offers. The commission is composed of representatives of the Foreign Ministry, the Finance Ministry, the Justice
Ministry, and other relevant institutions. Most of these funds will
be used to acquire buildings for embassies in European centers,
like London, Moscow, Rome, Vienna, Stockholm, and so forth.
An embassy is also expected to be built in Ankara. Three new
consulates general will also be opened in Munich, Melbourne,
and Venice. With this decision, better work conditions will be
secured for the approximately 160 employees in the Macedonian
diplomatic missions and consular posts (with local logistics support numbering approximately 100 employees). This will also
enable expansion of the current diplomatic network, which numbers 45 diplomatic missions and consular posts at the moment.
According to the dynamics set, by the end of this year buildings
will be bought in Ljubljana and Prague. Vienna and Istanbul are
next on the list. This decision of the Government is an exceptionally important step towards reinforcement and expansion of the
diplomatic network, as well as improvement of the work conditions. This will also cut the huge expenses for rent of buildings.
This decision of the Government can be described as a capital
investment for the Republic of Macedonia, the first such investment within the frames of Macedonia’s diplomatic service.
SECURITY OF MACEDONIAN DIPLOMATIC
AND CONSULAR MISSIONS
The current international security constellations necessitate constant monitoring of the security in the diplomatic and consular
missions. Striving to comply with the European standards for
physical protection of the diplomatic and consular missions,
the Foreign Ministry’s Directorate for Security and Informatics
is working on preparing and implementing statutory acts that
would regulate this matter. The foreign policy and security situation is monitored continuously in close cooperation with the
Ministry of Interior Affairs and the other security institutions,
and assessments are made pertaining to protection of Macedonia’s diplomatic and consular missions abroad. Attention is
also dedicated to continual advancement of the security culture
among all employees of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Macedonia’s diplomatic and consular missions abroad. This directorate also provides informatics and communications assistance to
MACEDONIAN DIPLOMATIC BULLETIN September, 2007
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the diplomatic and consular
missions of the Republic of Macedonia by constantly observing
the most modern achievements in the sphere of information
and communications technology. The biggest challenge in this
sphere is the constant upgrading of the communication with
Macedonia’s diplomatic and consular missions, chiefly via the IP
VPN technology and IP telephony. The aim of this is to achieve a
balance between easy access and protected flow of information.
The directorate manages the information system in the Foreign
Ministry and diplomatic and consular missions daily, and it also
dedicates great attention to providing training in informatics to
all employees. Indirectly, the directorate is also involved in the
project for creation of a national visa information system, in accordance with the EU standards for management of the process
for issuing visas.
BUILDINGS UNDER OWNERSHIP
OF REPUBLIC OF MACEDONIA
Beginnings of Organizing Macedonian
Embassies and Consulates by Danco Markovski
Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia in Belgrade
The building was acquired in year 1996. It covers an
area of approximately 400 square meters. The Embassy
and one small apartment for a caretaker are both situated in a courtyard that takes up 100 square meters.
One of the most important issues that
the Republic of Macedonia faced immediately after independence was receiving
recognition by the international community, promoting itself internationally
and protecting its national interests and
the interests of its citizens abroad, which
had previously fallen under the former
Yugoslav federation. This involved creation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
simultaneously with organization of a
diplomatic service abroad for the first
time in Macedonia’s history.
The process of creating a diplomatic
network started in 1992 by sending
diplomats, who in the capacity of liaison
officers (most frequently with an incompletely defined diplomatic status), served
in several more important capitals. However, as the number of countries with
which the Republic of Macedonia set up
diplomatic relations grew, so the basic
In January 1993,
preconditions for establishing embassies
and consulates were created. In January
three diplomats were
1993, three diplomats were sent with a
sent with a mission of
mission of opening up the first Macedonian embassies in Ankara and Ljubljana opening up the first
and the consulate general in Sofia, which Macedonian embassies
was raised to level of an embassy shortly
in Ankara and
after. A total of 43 embassies and consulates have been established since and
Ljubljana...
their number is expected to reach 46 by
the end of this year.
Noting these facts, as part of the more recent Macedonian diplomatic
history, it is my pleasure to recall the trust invested in me by being afforded the opportunity to participate directly in the opening of the first
embassy, and indirectly in the setting up of about ten other embassies and
consulates as part of the managing team of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
In carrying out the procedure of opening embassies and consulates,
apart from the necessity of possessing diplomatic skills, because of the
aforementioned limited possibilities, my colleagues had to demonstrate
dexterity and resourcefulness in fulfilling the tasks they were charged
with, which was oftentimes recognized by the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of the host countries.
I remember an interesting event that happened in the first few months
of my stay in Ankara, which reflects the circumstances in which the embassy was opened. Considering that we lacked technical personnel and
vehicles, I used taxi as a means of transportation. At a meeting with the
political director of the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador
Alev Kilic tried to give me friendly advice to be careful when hiring local technical staff for the embassy, considering that the “hired” secretary
used every opportunity when I was away not to take calls, turning on the
answering machine instead. When I told him that I was completely alone
at the embassy, amazed he turned to his colleagues and said: “Will is however above all. For such activities we send three to four officers”.
Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia in Washington
The building was bought towards the end of year
1996. The Embassy, the ambassador’s residence, and two
three-room apartments for the employees are all situated
in this building.
Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia in Berlin
Building land was purchased in the broader district
of central Berlin in year 1995 and a building was built on
this land. The building was finalized in year 1997. This
building houses the Embassy, the ambassador’s residence,
an apartment for a caretaker, and a guest apartment.
Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia in Bern
The building was procured in year 1999. The Embassy and an apartment for a diplomat are situated in this
building, which has an area of 600 square meters.
Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia in Sarajevo
The building was bought in year 2001. It has an area of
360 square meters and a courtyard. The Embassy and two
apartments for employees are situated in this building.
Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia in Paris
Ownership of this building was transferred to the Republic of Macedonia on 16 May year 2002. The Embassy
and two apartments for the employees were moved to
this building following the reconstruction and adaptation of the same in year 2003.
Permanent Mission of the Republic of Macedonia to
the European Union in Brussels
Ownership of the premises used by the Permanent
Mission of the Republic of Macedonia to the European
Union in Brussels was transferred on 31 January year
2007. The premises are located in the center of Brussels,
on the ground floor and first floor of an office building.
They cover an area of approximately 1,250 square meters
(the ground floor is 650 square meters, while the first
floor is 600 square meters).
“
”
MACEDONIAN DIPLOMATIC BULLETIN September, 2007
CONSULAR AFFAIRS
AND DIPLOMACY
by Jordan Panev
Consular affairs are one segment of the
work of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,
stipulated with the Law on Foreign Affairs,
the Rulebook on Organization of the Ministry, and other statutory acts and subacts.
Most missions of the Republic of Macedonia abroad are diplomatic and consular missions, which means that they also provide
consular services. They are very rarely of
purely diplomatic or culturally-informative
character. The diplomatic and consular missions’ activities at an international level are
regulated with the Vienna conventions on
diplomatic and consular affairs, years 1961
and 1963 respectively. These conventions
define, in detail, the sphere and method of
activity. Thus, I will focus mainly on the
consular affairs within the frames of the
Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The Foreign Ministry Sector for Consular Affairs deals with activities pertaining to:
We can say that protection of the interests of the Republic of
this sector represents a Macedonia and its citizens, as well as proservice to the citizens tection of the interests of the legal entities
abroad; consular relations with other states;
of the Republic of issuing of diplomatic and official docuMacedonia through ments and visas; the visa center; legalization
of documents; the activities of Macedonia’s
which they achieve diplomatic and consular missions abroad;
their rights and needs international regulations pertaining to
abroad. state borders and implementation of these
regulations; cooperation with international
organizations and foreign diplomatic and consular missions in the Republic of Macedonia; and other affairs in this sphere of activity. In other
words, we can say that this sector represents a service to the citizens of
the Republic of Macedonia through which they achieve their rights and
needs abroad. Therefore, there can be no improvisation in the work of
this sector (or the work of the consulates and the consular departments
in the embassies), which is why professional diplomats are employed in
the same.
The universality of consular officials can best be described through
an anecdote from my own diplomatic and consular experience. During
my mandate as consul general of the Republic of Macedonia to Istanbul
(2001-2005), I was invited to the formal opening of the building of the
new Consulate General of the United States to Istanbul. After the ceremony, the guests were able to visit the premises, which were divided
into a consular department, a department for economic affairs, press
department, culture department, science and technology department,
agriculture department, and so forth. The consul general of one Balkan
country joined me at one moment and I asked him whether they also
have so many departments in their consulate. He responded: of course,
but the problem is that I am the only diplomatic and consular employee
in the consulate.
“
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MACEDONIAN DIPLOMATIC BULLETIN September, 2007
e wish a successful diplomatic mission
to our colleagues:
Aleksandar Novotni - counselor at the Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia in Belgrade.
Biljana Stefanovska-Sekovska - counselor at
the Permanent Mission of the Republic of
Macedonia to NATO in Brussels.
Goran Stevcevski - minister counselor at the
Permanent Mission of the Republic of
Macedonia to the UN in New York.
Jani Bogoevski - appointed to the position of
minister counselor at the Permanent Mission
of the Republic of Macedonia to the EU in
Brussels.
Kire Ilioski - minister plenipotentiary at the
Embassy of the Republic of Mace­donia in
Belgrade.
Milan Spiridonovski - minister plenipotentiary
at the Permanent Mission of the Republic of
Macedonia to the EU in Brussels.
Salim Kerimi - minister counselor at the Consular Office of the Republic of Macedonia in
Copenhagen.
Sofija Asikova-Georgievska - first secretary at
the Permanent Mission of the Republic of
Macedonia to NATO in Brussels.
Hanif Dauti - first secretary at the Permanent
Mission of the Republic of Macedonia to the
EU in Brussels.
Cvetko Kolcakovski - first secretary at the Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia in Sofia.
Nazif Xhaferi - counselor, member of Srgjan
Kerim’s office.
The Editorial Board of MDB proudly
announces that two of its members, Eli
Bojadzieska Ristevski and Igor Popovski
together with Nazif Xhaferi were assigned
to the Office of the President of the 62nd
General Assembly of the United Nations, Mr.
Srgjan Kerim. By undertaking this extremely
challenging task, both Eli and Igor, will shift
from observing and discussing foreign policy
issues within the MFA and MDB, to creating
real global policies, within the framework of
the General Assembly of the United Nations.
Being proud of their success, we wish them
even greater achievements at East River.
BILATERAL RELATIONS
Spain Stays Macedonia’s
Great Saporter
Macedonia Reaffirms Position on
Existence of One China
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Macedonia, Antonio Milososki, met with the Speaker of the Spanish
Senate, Francisco Javier Rojo Garcia, on 10 September, which
marked the start of his 2-day official visit to the Kingdom of
Spain. The following day he had a meeting with his Spanish
counterpart Miguel Angel Moratinos.
A senior Chinese party delegation led by Wang Yiariu, minister of the international department of the Central Committee
of the Communist Party of China, paid an official visit to the
Republic of Macedonia.
Minister Milososki’s meeting with Speaker Rojo Garcia
raised several issues with regard to the bilateral cooperation
and the aspiration of the Republic of Macedonia to join the EU
and NATO. It was underlined that Spain was a strong advocate
of further EU enlargement and that the Republic of Macedonia
should consider Spain a great supporter on that road.
Minister Milososki also delivered a lecture at the Elcano
Royal Institute before an audience of thirty representatives of
the sociopolitical life in Spain. He used the opportunity to make
presentation of the government program and efforts for integration of the Republic of Macedonia into the European and EuroAtlantic institutions in near future.
At the meeting with Macedonian Prime Minister Nikola
Gruevski, the two officials agreed that the mutual trust between
the two countries is at a high level, and they expressed satisfaction with the cooperation at an international level. They both
expressed interest in developing the cooperation in the economic sphere. Nikola Gruevski reaffirmed Macedonia’s position
on the existence of “one China” and on Taiwan as an integral
part of China’s territory.
The Chinese minister was also received by Macedonian
President Branko Crvenkovski. They exchanged views on the
bilateral political and economic relations and on topical international issues.
Lithuanian MFA Vaitiekūnas
Visits Macedonia
The strengthening of the economic ties and the Euro-Atlantic accession experience of Lithuania were among the key topics
discussed between MFA Milososki and his Lithuanian counterpart Petras Vaitiekūnas during his visit to Skopje on August, 28
2007. At the venue MFA Vaitiekūnas once again reaffirmed the
Lithuanian strong support to the Macedonian EU and NATO
bid and accompanied by prominent businessmen from
Lithuania called for enhanced economic collaboration and
hence signed the Agreement on Avoidance of Double Taxation
and Prevention of Income and Capital Tax Fiscal Evasion.
 MFA Vaitiekūnas was also received by the President
Crvenkovski, President of the Assembly Georgievski and the
Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski. 
Fm Milososki Participates in Closing
Session of Informal Meeting of EU Foreign
Ministers (Viana do Castelo, Portugal)
At the invitation of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Portugal, Luis Amado, current holder of the European Union
Presidency, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of
Macedonia, Antonio Milososki, participated in the closing
session of the informal meeting of foreign affairs ministers of
the EU member states in Viana do Castelo, Portugal, in early
September. The session was dedicated to the Middle East peace
process, with special attention to the situation in Lebanon.
Minister Milososki also had fringe meetings with several EU
counterparts.
The issues raised at this traditional informal meeting included Kosovo, the cooperation of the EU with its regional partners,
Russia, Ukraine, India and Africa, as well as the reform process
of the EU treaties.
On 19 September Canada
recognized Macedonia’s constitutional name.
MACEDONIAN DIPLOMATIC BULLETIN September, 2007
5
Independence Day Celebrated at Macedonian Embassies
8 September - The Day of Independence of the Republic of
Macedonia was officially commemorated by the Embassies and
Consulates of the Republic of Macedonia this year too. In order
to commemorate Macedonia’s Independence Day, they organized
meetings and receptions accompanied by activities and events of
cultural and artistic nature. On this occasion, our diplomats spoke
about the importance of the national holiday, about Macedonia’s
16 years of independence and its foreign and home policy achievements that have paved the country’s way to the European and
Euro-Atlantic organizations.
What follows is a brief summary of the Independence Day celebrations in some of the Macedonian Embassies:
Vienna, Austria - The Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia
in Vienna and the permanent mission of the Republic of Macedonia to the Vienna-based international organizations staged a
gala reception at the renowned
Kursalon Wien on the occasion
of 8 September, Macedonia’s
Independence Day. The reception was also used for economic
presentation of the Republic of
Macedonia.
Canberra, Australia - The holiday was celebrated in one of
Australia’s federal capitals, Perth, in cooperation with the Macedonian Council for Western Australia. On this occasion, the
Macedonian Orthodox Church of St. Nikola and the Macedonian
Social Center hosted an exhibition honoring one hundred years of
Macedonian statehood coupled with presentation of Macedonian
food and wines.
At the same time, the main newspaper in Canberra The Canberra Times ran a feature by Macedonian Ambassador Viktor
Gaber on the 16-year growth of the Republic of Macedonia.
Tirana, Albania - The reception organized at Tirana International Hotel on the occasion of Macedonia’s Independence Day
went in a very pleasant atmosphere. It was attended by a great
many political figures, including Albanian Prime Minister Sali
Berisha. Macedonian wines were served to the guests and traditional Macedonian music was played.
London, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern
Ireland - For the diplomatic corps and the Macedonian citizens
living and working in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and
Northern Ireland, the Embassy organized a reception at one of
the banqueting halls of the Royal Horseguards hotel. At the same
time, on the occasion of 8 September, an exhibition of paintings
by Zaneta Veljanovska opened at the London Gallery, Macedonian
entertainer Goce Arnaudov held a concert, while Ivana Tasev exhibited a set of black-and-white photographs.
Berlin, Germany - Apart from holding a reception at the European Academy in Berlin, the Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia marked Macedonia’s Independence Day with a series of
cultural events too. On the occasion of this national holiday, the
new website of the German-Macedonian Association www.makedonische-gesellschaft.de was promoted.
Copenhagen, Denmark - A reception was organized at the Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia and a celebration was staged
later in the evening by the Association Macedonia in Copenhagen.
Toronto, Canada - Macedonia’s Independence Day was marked
by the opening night of film director Milco Mancevski’s latest
credit Shadows. In cooperation with the production house Bavaria
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MACEDONIAN DIPLOMATIC BULLETIN September, 2007
Film International, a dinner
and a cocktail party were
organized at which director
Mancevski addressed the
guests. On the same occasion, in a friendly atmosphere and in cooperation
with the Church of St. Kliment Ohridski in Toronto
a cocktail party was thrown with guests from the Macedonian
Diaspora.
Bucharest, Romania - 8 September and the ending of the 4year diplomatic mission of the Macedonian Ambassador to Romania, Tihomir Ilievski, were celebrated with a reception in the
attendance of the whole diplomatic corps in Bucharest and distinguished persons of Romania’s public life.
Moscow, Russia - A reception was organized in the Cultural
Center of the Main Administration for Service to the Diplomatic
Corps at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation.
The Embassy used the event also for a small, yet prominent tourist
promotion of the Republic of Macedonia, and advertising materials were handed out to all guests.
Zagreb, Croatia - The Embassy commemorated 8 September
at a meeting with representatives of the Macedonian cultural associations, the municipal and district councils of the Ministry
of National Minorities, the Council of the Ministry of National
Minorities of the Government of the Republic of Croatia, the
Macedonian Church Communities in the Republic of Croatia, the
Croatian-Macedonian Association of Friendship, and other organizations of Macedonian emigrants in the Republic of Croatia.
Washington, the USA - The Embassy marked Macedonia’s
Independence Day by holding a reception, attended also by such
prominent figures as Congressman Bill Pascrell from New Jersey
and Rosemary DiCarlo from the United States administration.
The Resident Mission of the Republic of Macedonia to the UN in
New York organized a reception for the resident representatives
and the diplomatic corps of the UN member countries and the
representatives of the UN Secretariat.
Ljubljana, Slovenia - In the small town of Trzin, just outside
Ljubljana, the Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia in the Republic of Slovenia organized a reception in a medieval castle on
the occasion of the national holiday.
Ankara, Turkey - The reception staged by the Embassy and the
Military Attaché of the Republic of Macedonia in the Republic
of Turkey was embellished by audio and video events about and
from Macedonia.
Madrid, Spain - A reception was organized at
the Intercontinental hotel
in Madrid, the main guest
of which was Macedonian
Foreign Minister Antonio
Milososki and the delegation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic
of Macedonia.
In the attendance of the diplomatic corps, senior state officials
and distinguished public figures, receptions were organized also
by the Embassies of the Republic of Macedonia in Paris, Stockholm, Belgrade and Sofia.
Ambassador Aleksandar Tavciovski,
Director for Analysis and Research at the MFA
Good Neighbor Relations
There are a few descriptions of the character and quality of
the relations between countries, such as ally’s, good neighbor,
friendly, correct, cold, strained, etc.
The abovementioned (and other unmentioned) definitions
may be used in defining relations between any two countries in
the world. The term good neighbor relations, however, may only
be used for describing relations between countries that border
each other and that as neighbors share a number of issues and
challenges.
The end of the Cold War and the historical change that occurred in Europe in general and inside the countries was used by
the countries for setting up the foundations for building bilateral
relations on new grounds in the spirit of the good neighbor relations and friendly cooperation. To this end, the practice of concluding agreements for good neighbor relations and friendly
cooperation was reinstated and particularly applied between and
with the countries of Central and Eastern Europe.
In these agreements, prominent stress was laid on the provisions about the countries’ territorial integrity and border inviolability. The issues they addressed also included social and economic problems, as well as protection of national minorities.
This trend of concluding bilateral agreements was also followed by the EU, which in 1995 with the Stability Pact promoted the policy of guaranteeing stability in Central and Eastern
Europe via bilateral agreements on good neighbor relations,
focusing on borders and national minorities The Pact, popularly
known as Baladur’s initiative, included six countries of Central
and Eastern Europe and three Baltic countries and the carrot, or
the incentive, was the EU integration.
Aware of the need for good relations with all its neighbors,
and of its geo-strategic position - in the heart of the traditionally sensitive Balkan Peninsula - the Republic of Macedonia ever
since its independence committed itself to promoting relations
with its immediate neighbors and the countries of the broader
region as one of its chief foreign policy priorities. Hence, it is
no coincidence that the Republic of Macedonia was and still is
frequently defined as a leader in the development of regional cooperation, which is one of the important tools for promoting also
good neighbor relations with the countries of the region, as well
as regional security and stability, including immediate relations.
The Republic of Macedonia also offered its neighbors and initiated concluding of agreements on good neighbor relations.
This approach was of course duly recognized in Macedonia’s
successful path toward the European and Transatlantic integration. Thus, in 1997 the agreement on cooperation with the EU
came into force. In 1998 Macedonia was granted the candidate
country status for joining NATO. In 2000 it signed the Stabilization and Association Agreement and in 2005 it became an EU
candidate member state.
The Republic of Greece, until recently the only NATO and EU
member state in the region, has undoubtedly supported and contributed to Macedonia’s road, which is logical considering that it
is in its best interest and is also an indicator of the good neighbor
relations between the Republic of Macedonia and the Republic of
Greece.
Today the issue of the good neighbor relations between the
Republic of Macedonia and the Republic of Greece is becom-
ing a spotlight issue, both within
the framework of international
institutions and in certain public
statements of high-ranking officials,
which frequently raise the question
of whether the good neighbor relations between the Republic of Macedonia and the Republic of Greece
have become strained.
The Republic of Macedonia and
the Republic of Greece established
their bilateral relations on 13 September 1995 by signing the Interim
Agreement, the first (A) part of which is entitled “Friendly Relations and Measures for Building Trust”, the Memorandum of
Application for the Practical Measures of the Interim Agreement
(13 October 1995) and the Memorandum on the Mutual Establishment of Liaison Offices in Skopje and Athens.
Besides the specifics of the concrete bilateral relations, the
Interim Agreement contains also a considerable part of the basic
structure of the aforementioned agreements for good neighbor
relations, such as mutual recognition of borders (signed agreement), commitment to integration with international organizations (the EU and NATO), respect of each other’s standards,
measures for cooperation and mutual understanding and respect
of border inviolability and territorial integrity. However, what
this agreement does not stipulate (otherwise very prominently
present in other such agreements) is the countries’ commitment
to protecting minority rights.
So that we may objectively understand the quality of the bilateral relations with the Republic of Greece, it will suffice to point
out only a few facts. As far as foreign investments are concerned,
the Republic of Greece with its input of 280 million dollars is
Macedonia’s third greatest foreign investor. With the aim of raising trade and developing economic cooperation between the
two countries, we are interested in intensifying the activities for
setting up higher forms of cooperation (production cooperation,
joint ventures, etc.). At the same time, the Greek Plan for Reconstruction of the Balkans of 550 million euros projects 75 million
euros fro Macedonia.
Activities have also been taken for more intense cooperation in a number of areas: internal affairs, opening of additional
border crossings, culture, cooperation of municipalities, the
Prespa-Ohrid Euro-region, environment, water supply, tourism,
etc. In May 2007 the Government of the Republic of Macedonia
instructed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of the
Interior to make sure that Greek citizens can cross the Macedonian border only with IDs for a given period of time. There are
many Macedonian citizens studying at the universities in Thessaloniki and Athens and Greece is a traditional destination for
hundreds of thousands of Macedonian tourists.
This short overview shows that the relations between the two
countries have progressed greatly since 1995 and there is also a
steady trend of expanding them further in a number of areas.
A confirmation of the good neighbor relations can also be
found on the official website of the Greek Ministry of Foreign
Affairs where it is said that since the signing of the Interim
MACEDONIAN DIPLOMATIC BULLETIN September, 2007
7
Ambassador Aleksandar Tavciovski:
Good Neighbor Relations
Agreement the relations have advanced in a good way and that
there have been frequent bilateral meetings of officials of both
the countries. A total of 21 bilateral agreements have so far been
signed. Of course, there is still considerable room and interest for
furthering the cooperation, as evidenced by the rising interest of
Greek businesses to set foot on the Macedonian market.
Bearing all this in mind, I trust that not only is there no dilemma if good neighbor relations exist, but the relations are evidently growing. There are also occasional downward tendencies
or standoffs, but they are most often motivated by the internal
political affairs and are surmountable, as clearly demonstrated by
our experience so far.
In 1993 it was said that the differing positions concerning
Macedonia’s name (not going into greater detail as to how this
assessment was made) represent a security concern for Greece.
Most of the international community today realizes that this issue
- our name and our identity - is a highly relevant security concern
for the Republic of Macedonia, as in fact evidenced by the fact
that three countries, permanent members of the Security Council
of the United Nations, decided in the meantime to recognize the
constitutional name of the Republic of Macedonia, a decision
which they would certainly not have taken, if it had posed any
security and stability threats to the region and the Republic of
Greece. Another 117 UN member states did the same. Hence, it
is necessary that these differences are finally approached from the
point of view of this reality: the name of our country, Republic of
Macedonia, poses no threat either to the peace and stability of the
region or the Republic of Greece with which we sincerely wish
to continue building good and versatile relations in the service
of better bilateral and good neighbor relations and in the service
of the peace and stability of the region and its prosperity. Under
Article 5 of the Agreement, Macedonia and Greece have been
conducting name talks under the auspices of the UN Secretary
General and the Republic of Macedonia will continue as before to
play a constructive part in these negotiations.
“Time should be given time” is a saying that, although I recently heard in the context of another issue, I am confident can
fully apply to the name matter too, as confirmed by our experience so far and the successful development of our relations since
1995 to date.
In this regard I hold that we should carry on seeing the positive sides of our relations, which will be best realized through
intense contacts and cooperation in all the areas of our bilateral,
as well as multilateral relations. I am confident that the Republic
of Greece is just as concerned about stability in the region as
Macedonia is. In this context, both the countries undoubtedly
take in the same fashion the aspirations of the Republic of Macedonia to join NATO together with Croatia and Albania, or to
be more exact to be extended an invitation at the NATO Summit in Bucharest, and by starting accession talks with the EU to
become part of the EU family in near future.
In view of the aforementioned definitions of relations between
countries, our wish and goal is to move on from good neighbor
relations to ally’s relations, for which, I am confident, there is sufficient interest and need with both the countries. It is high time
the region entered a stage of trust, cooperation and prosperity.
Colleague Misajlovski Retires from Active Service
A fitting ceremony was held in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the occasion of our colleague Gjorgji Misajlovski’s retirement from active service. At this
ceremony, State Secretary Igor Ilievski presented Misajlovski with a certificate of
honor for his years-long dedication to his profession.
Colleague Misajlovski is an experienced diplomat who carried out his duties
professionally in four European countries (Austria, Germany, Russia, and Poland)
and was chargé d’affaires in two diplomatic and consular missions (Warsaw and
Vienna), while at the same time being accredited in a few countries. All colleagues agree that Misajlovski is a person of exceptional energy and broad diapason of interests, who did not hesitate to share his experiences with the young
diplomats.
The editorial board of the Macedonian Diplomatic Bulletin joins in the heartfelt good wishes on the occasion of colleague Gjorgji Misajlovski’s retirement.
IN MEMORIAM
Tose Proeski 1981-2007
The Macedonian mega pop star Tose Proeski, who died in
a car crash in Croatia, was a great humanist, who sang to help
individuals, institutions and organizations.
In 2003 he was presented with the humanitarian Mother
Theresa Award and became a Regional UNICEF Ambassador.
In 2004 he was appointed as a UNICEF National Ambassador for Children, and recorded the song “Za ovoj svet”
(“This World”) which is now the UNICEF anthem.
He held his last concert at the City Stadium in Skopje on
October 5. The concert was humanitarian, intended to raise
funds for reconstruction of primary schools in the country.
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MACEDONIAN DIPLOMATIC BULLETIN September, 2007