Vasil Sterjovski, leader of the Macedonian Alliance for European Integration party in Albania, condemned the “aggressive Bulgarian campaign” to get the Macedonians in Albania to register as Bulgarians.

The campaign began before the census, but it will not persuade anyone. We live on the border with Macedonia, where our brothers live. On the other side of the border to Greece, in Prespa, we also have Macedonians. We are can’t be Bulgarians. In the memory of the Macedonians in Albania we have indelibly recorded the massacres of the Bulgarian occupying armies during the First and Second World War, when Macedonians were the worst persecuted, Sterjovski said.

Bulgarian agents are offering their EU passports in exchange for an identity change. Sterjovski said that Macedonians from Albania are offered a Bulgarian passport for 5,000 EUR, while Albanians need to pay up to 25,000 EUR. Bulgarian Vice President Iliyana Yotova was in Albania these past days to urge Macedonians there to register as Bulgarians in the census.