Outgoing Prime Minister Zoran Zaev gave up on his proposed vetting of judges and prosecutors, but insisted that the judiciary will be “purged” through other means. Zaev’s reign relies to a large extent on loyal prosecutors and judges going after the opposition VMRO-DPMNE party and his announcement that he wants to systematically “vet” the judiciary under the Albanian model caused worries of even greater political abuse of the third branch of government.

I agree to a thorough investigation into my personal property, that of my family, of my ministers, that is a good thing and it is healthy. The same should apply to the judges and the prosecutors, under a transparent manner, Zaev said.

The trust in the Macedonian judiciary is rapidly deteriorating after the political persecutions of the past years and the major corruption scandal involving Special Prosecutor Katica Janeva, who was supposed to restore faith in the rule of law.

It was reported that European Union countries were strongly opposed to the “vetting” proposal made by Zaev and his SDSM party.