Zaev’s First Deputy Prime Minister Artan Grubi again reiterated that Zoran Zaev needs to remain as leader of the Government. DUI rejected Zaev’s resignation as soon as he announced it, and the party continues to point out that it has an arrangement with Zaev, either as a way to push him to remain Prime Minister, or to provide itself with an excuse for leaving the coalition.

Zaev’s SDSM party yesterday formally accepted his resignation and began the process of electing a new leader.

I wish them success in the leadership election. That is their own, internal matter and we respect it and will accept the outcome. Regarding Zaev’s resignation as Prime Minister, we believe it should wait. We have many important matters ahead of us in the coming months and we think we need to complete some processes with Zaev as head of the Government, Grubi said, while visiting an elementary school in Skopje with Bulgarian member of the European Parliament Ilhan Kyuchyuk. The school was attended by five children who were among the 45 killed in the devastating bus crash in Bulgaria on Tuesday morning.

Grubi pointed primarily to the dispute with Bulgaria, as an issue that needs to be resolved by Zaev before he goes. Zaev declared readiness to accept Bulgarian demands aimed at Macedonia’s national identity and history, but this cost him badly in the ranks of his own party, and he suffered a major defeat in the local elections.