Simona Ugrinovska, the director of the Macedonian National Theater, will not be dismissed but will have to pay a fine for allowing the Albanian nationalist group Shverceri to celebrate an event in the prestigious institution.
Predictably, the “celebration” turned into a rampage as the fans of the football club Shkupi shouted insults at Macedonians, jumped on the seats and sliced the curtains with knives. A video of the event caused outrage, and the Government, which was co-organizing an event to celebrate Albanian literacy just before the Shverceri event, ordered that Ugrinovska is fined by 15 percent of her salary over three months. Additionally, MNT will try to collect damages from the nationalist group.
The rampage was seen as a symbolic event, as the theater, originally built in the 1920ies and destroyed in the great earthquake of 1963, was re-built under the initiative of former Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski. Allowing Albanian nationailsts to run wild in it was seen as a deliberate attempt to humiliate Gruevski’s push to protect Macedonian national dignity.