Zoran Zaev had a number of bizarre exchanges with the press today, when journalists pushed him on his own responsibility for the catastrophic hospital fire in Tetovo that killed 15 people.

What do you want me to do? Cover myself with ashes? Pour gasoline on myself and set myself on fire? You must notice that this is all becoming banal. There was moral responsibility from the director of the hospital, the deputy minister, the minister.. That was a temporary modular facility, it does not require issuing a full permit. It only requires a permit for use, like when you need a place chairs and tables in front of a cafe.., were some of the comments Zaev made to the press. Most bizzarely, his rambling comments were at one point followed by applause from the assembled supporters who attended his event, which caused outrage among Albanian social media commentators – most of the victims in the fire in Tetovo were ethnic Albanians.

Healthcare Minister Venko Filipce and several lower officials offered their resignations to Zaev, but he refused to accept them, insisting that the investigation must be completed first. Zaev remained silent for the first several days after the catastrophe, but soon his comments about the fire became combative and feisty, and strongly political.