Tearing down the Macedonia Gate would be an act of barbarism, defiance of civilization, said architect Vangel Bozinovski, one of the authors of the Skopje 2014 project. Bozinovski responded as the Zaev led Government instructed the Centar municipal council to alter the urban plans in a way that would allow the destruction of the Macedonia Gate.

This is a version of the Arc de Triomphe built by Napoleon and it represents the entire history of Macedonia. Destroying it would mean to negate the Macedonian civilization and Macedonian pride, through the destruction of the scenes depicted in it, Bozinovski said.

The Gate, which is used to welcome victorious sports teams, contains three dozen depictions of scenes from Macedonian history, such as the victories of Alexander the Great, the spread of Christianity through Ss. Cyril and Methodius, Tsar Samoil’s kingdom, the partisan war during World War Two and the expulsion of Macedonians from the Aegean up to the declaration of independence in 1991. The Gate was a prime target of leftist groups and the SDSM party during their 2015 Colored Revolution. Since grabbing power, SDSM has made major concessions to neighboring countries such as Greece and Bulgaria, giving away the name of Macedonia and declaring historic figures as Greeks or Bulgarians, but this has not satisfied the neighbors and the demands are increasing.

Speaking about the current Bulgarian demands that legendary VMRO leader Goce Delcev is declared to have been a Bulgarian, historian Todor Cepreganov said that Macedonia can’t continue on the path of abolishing its national identity.

Nobody here is against EU integration, but we can’t deface our nation for it, Cepreganov said in a TV interview.