The decision by former Prime Minister and President Branko Crvenkovski to launch a rare political initiative drew a bitter response from Petar Bogojeski, from the “reformist” wing of VMRO-DPMNE. According to Bogojeski, Crvenkovski’s regional EU integration initiative risks lumping Macedonia together with slower moving regional countries and especially tying us up with the unresolved Kosovo issue.

Crvenkovski met with Zoran Zaev today to promote a meeting of the Podgorica club of ex regional presidents in Skopje next month, which would focus on Balkan EU integration.

Crvenkovski came out of retirement to lay a cuckoo’s egg in the Macedonian European nest. The Western Balkans will be held hostage by the Kosovo and Serbia issues for a long time, or rather by the Serbian issue. Crvenkovski’s desperate attempt will put us right in the middle of the Serbian mess and its goal is to prevent us from joining the EU before Serbia resolves all its problems, mainly Kosovo, and at the best case scenario have us join the EU together with Serbia, if not later. Paris, driven by past emotional ties to Serbia, is already under way to become part of this scenario, Bogojeski told Fokus.

France is now outspoken in its opposition against the opening of accession talks for Macedonia, despite promises from Zoran Zaev that accession talks will begin in June, after Macedonia gave up on its name. According to Bogojeski, Zaev is beginning to follow a pro-Serbian line along with Crvenkovski and will subvert Macedonian interests to the Serbian interest to remain the leading EU candidate in the region.

Macedonia should continue alone on its path to the EU, under tutorship from Berlin and Paris, with support from the US. Of course, it would be best if all countries from the Balkans are part of the EU, including Serbia, but that mustn’t come at Macedonia’s expense, adds Bogojeski.

Similar allegations that people in Zaev’s Government are working to sabotage Macedonia’s integration are sometimes raised against the Albanian members of the Government, who are seen as unwilling to have Macedonia open accession talks with the EU while Albania is being denied the same option. Opposition to Albania opening its accession talks is seen as much greater than the opposition against Macedonia, but the two countries are considered as part of a group.