At the Skopje court, the final statements in the trial over the 2013 protests in front of the Centar municipality will take place today. The trial is one of the cases initiated by disgraced former Special Prosecutor Katica Janeva meant to degrade the then ruling VMRO-DPMNE party.
Besides then VMRO leader Nikola Gruevski, who is now a political emigre in Hungary, the case is also aimed at former Transportation Minister Mile Janakieski and former VMRO member of Parliament Daniela Rangelova, who has since sided with the SDSM party. They are accused of organizing a violent protest, after several hundred protesters chanted and banged on the windows of the Centar municipal council, as council members were preparing to stop the reconstruction of a historic church torn down by the Communist regime. There were no injuries in the protest, but Janeva used an unlawfully obtained audio recording to claim that the VMRO leadership wanted to see SDSM municipal officials get hurt.
The defense presented precedents about numerous, far more violent protests organized by SDSM, in which there were actual injuries of police officers, and which ended with not guilty verdicts or with the charges being dropped.