We mark a significant anniversary of the agreement that secured a peaceful future and further democratic construction of Northern Macedonia with equal participation of all its ethnic communities. The agreement laid the foundations on which we as a newly formed government in 2017 are building our common – one and equal society, including respecting equally all ethnic identities and interests of all citizens living here, said Prime Minister Zoran Zaev in his address to the conference “After Ohrid” on the occasion of 20 years since the signing of the Framework Agreement.
After Ohrid, Zaev stressed, our country is building mature policies, and instead of conflicts we are talking about economic progress in our country and the promotion of good neighborly relations, and together with our neighbors we are creating an Open Balkans.
- After Ohrid, all together, regardless of our ethnic, national, religious, social and cultural affiliation, we have built an equal society where everyone can find prosperity and a better future. I’m glad that after 20 years we are discussing all these benefits. One of the most important benefits is that we organize our lives through dialogue, together dedicated to each individual, family and citizen, said Zaev.
In 2017, Zaev stressed, our priority was to give life to the Agreement and adopted the law on the use of languages, which completed the provisions of the Ohrid Framework Agreement.
- The Ohrid Agreement put an end to the conflict, which unfortunately took victims, but from this distance we can freely say that it is a guarantee of peace, which we later upgraded and promoted, creating a community in which citizens have coexistence and mutual respect and tolerance. A community in which citizens have the same or similar visions for a better tomorrow. Northern Macedonia is a beautiful mosaic of ethnic and other communities and diversity, said the Prime Minister.
The Ohrid Framework Agreement, stressed Zaev, sent the message of mutual understanding, apology and forgiveness between Macedonians and Albanians and among all other citizens.
- That is the message for coexistence, for equal citizens in our common homeland. As a country, we have taken all the necessary measures to build an integrated society that is firmly based on the rule of law, protection of human rights, respect for diversity and we are developing into a community where opportunities are equal for all, as a NATO member and a future EU member. , said Zaev.
We have created a civil state, he pointed out, with equal conditions for all who live in it.
- Macedonians, Albanians, Turks, Serbs, Vlachs, Roma, Bosniaks and all other communities. The 20th anniversary of the Ohrid Framework Agreement coincides with the 30th anniversary of the independence of our country and the 80th anniversary of the popular uprising and the 20th anniversary of the signing of the Stabilization and Association Agreement, as our first step towards achieving our common goal of EU membership, said Zaev.
All communities, he added, should be proud to be a positive example from which others learn.
- Delivery of peace, a model that many other countries and regions, not only in the Balkans and Europe, but also in the world can learn. And I take it upon myself to leave a legacy, to keep what we have achieved together these 20 years and to be grateful to the modern world from which we learn a lot and which helps us a lot. It is the western world that was here 20 years ago and is here today, as our support. Above all, our strategic partners, the United States and the European Union, said Zaev.