Bulgarian Interior Minister Ivan Demerdziev, who is in Skopje for the honoring of Goce Delcev, confirmed that a group of Bulgarians will try to visit Delcev’s grave in the St. Spas church.

I will personally meet the Bulgarians in Skopje and together we will lay flowers on Goce Delcev’s grave, Demerdziev told the Bulgarian press. He added that security is in place and that all who want to come will be allowed to the church without any problem.

Roads leading to the church are closed off for Macedonian citizens, as the Government fears more incidents between the two countries, after the beating of a Bulgarian activist in Ohrid in mid January, that created serious diplomatic tensions. Bulgarian nationalists have declared their intent to come in large numbers, similarly to the honoring of Mara Buneva in mid January that also added to the tensions.

Prime Minister Kovacevski hinted that the most outspoken Bulgarian nationalists, such as Dzhambazhki, will not be allowed to enter the country and to cause incidents. A foundation is instead urging Bulgarians from Macedonia to organize and come to the church. Police patrols are closely examining vehicles with Bulgarian license plates that are coming toward Skopje, A1on reports. The paytoll points on the Kumanovo – Skopje highway are used to examine the vehicles that may carry nationalists headed to Skopje.

Activists from the Patriotic Institute of VMRO-DPMNE are leading the protest on the approach to the Kale fortress complex, where the church is located. They put out signs with quotes from Delcev, clearly marking him as a Macedonian, not Bulgarian leader, as Bulgaria often claims.