Monday, 18 December 2017 | News today: 14

US Ambassador: Those responsible need to be held accountable, but presumption of innocence must be respected

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Those responsible for the events of April 27th need to be held accountable, but the process must also respect full presumption of innocence, US Ambassador to Macedonia Jess Baily said Thursday.

Speaking to reporters outside Macedonia’s Parliament, Baily stated that the US Embassy, alongside the representatives of the EU to Macedonia, were following the recent developments after the string of arrests related to the violent incursion into Parliament in April.

“As a friend and strong supporter of Macedonia, we are following these important developments. Police, prosecution, the judicial system should proceed transparently with full respect of the highest standards. We, the EU, have said that those responsible need to be held accountable, but the process must also respect full presumption of innocence. That’s part of due process. The Parliament, as it is its role, has important discussions on that front. That’s part of a democratic governance,” Ambassador Baily told members of the media.

Asked to comment on an information that he could be succeeded by Hoyt Brian Yee, Baily said that there was no nomination of the next ambassador of the US to Macedonia and that the only institution in charge of appointing ambassadors was the White House.

The US Ambassador today accompanied Laura Cooper, US Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, in a meeting with Parliament Speaker Talat Xhaferi. Cooper is visiting Macedonia where she is set to take part in the U.S. – Adriatic Charter Defense Ministerial in Ohrid on December 1.