Bulgaria wants us to change the history, to say that they did not occupy Macedonia during the Second World War and did not deport the Macedonian Jews to Treblinka, Aleksandar Nikoloski, vice president of VMRO DPMNE said in Strasbourg on Thursday.
I would like to support the report that was presented today and I think that these challenges are still ahead of us. As you may know, there was a large Jewish community in Skopje, as well as in Macedonia as a whole, but unfortunately during World War II, mainly, most of the people living in Skopje were actually over 90% deported to Treblinka at that time, in death camps, and now has a small community. But we have built a Museum of the Holocaust, one of the few in Europe, in the very center of the city where we want to pay tribute to the victims, said Nikoloski.
Another thing I want to connect with that, but also with the present times.
We all know that Macedonia has a huge problem with Bulgaria over the start of accession negotiations with the European Union. One of the key issues we face is related to history, but also to the denial of the Bulgarian state during World War II, they were the ones who occupied today’s Macedonia. They were the ones who unfortunately organized this expulsion of the Jewish community and they were the ones who sent them to Treblinka. What we ask of them is to mark it and acknowledge that it happened. Unfortunately, what we are seeing is a complete denial and using the power of membership in the European Union it force us to change the history in such a way as to open accession negotiations. Believe it or not, what is required of us is to change history, to change the identity of the country, the nation, even to negotiate the language, just to start accession negotiations with the European Union, using their membership in the European Union to rewrite history, I would say politely about them, but a way that is completely false, that is not true and is against history and is against what happened during World War II. I would like to ask here in Strasbourg, to change these practices, this week the European Council is being held in Brussels where there will be a meeting with the leaders of the Western Balkans, and I ask Bulgaria to change its behavior and allow the opening of accession negotiations and to face the reality, to face their historical problem, but also to face the history as it is and to face that there is a nation that exists up to their border called the Macedonian nation and a state that is Macedonian. Only by accepting the common values can we move forward and the step that the Bulgarian Prime Minister can take is to come to the Holocaust Museum in Skopje and ask for a great forgiveness from the victims, Nikoloski said in Strasbourg.