Zaev’s Interior Minister Oliver Spasovski announced that he has no intention to resign after the spectacular escape of Saso Mijalkov. In a press conference that is still on-going, Spasovski rejected question after question from media outlets with the same message – how is it possible that he will not resign after Mijalkov and Nikola Gruevski before him, were able to leave the country on his watch.

The Interior Ministry is taking all available measures to secure the person and is actively working to locate and apprehend him. We conducted 10 interrogations with family members and his security team, we are seizing phones, documents, recordings… We need to assign the blame to the lack of a comprehensive system. Unless we put in place a system we will continue to have such serious omissions, Spasovski said.

He added that he believes that Mijalkov is still in Macedonia, but that the police does not know where exactly. “If we did, we probably would have arrested him by now”.

The shocking development raised suspicions that Zaev and Spasovski allowed Mijalkov to escape the police pursuit as he was about to face sentencing in the 2015 wiretapping scandal. Mijalkov helped Zaev get to the 81 votes he needed to impose the name change on Macedonia in 2019, and later worked to create factions in VMRO-DPMNE and weaken Zaev’s main political opponent.