The protesters detained after the April 27th trial deserve a retrial, a new chance for justice that was granted to the Islamic killers of the Good Friday massacre and to former Interior Minister Ljube Boskovski. This is the demand from Aleksandar Pandov from the Patriotic Institute of VMRO-DPMNE, ahead of the protests planned on Sunday which are held to demand the release of the political prisoners.

Sixteen protesters and Interior Ministry officials were sentenced by the Zaev regime to lengthy prison sentences for participating in the protest. Provoked by the irregular vote to appoint a new Speaker, protesters entered the Parliament building and some of them attacked SDSM and other members of Parliament.

We need to consider the events leading up to this. The Tirana Platform, the announcements that a Government that will dismantle Macedonia is being formed. This was justification for the protests and that is why they were so massive. Remember that the Albanian national anthem was performed in the Parliament on that day and that Talat Xhaferi was named Speaker with just 58 votes – among them one member of Parliament voting with both hands raised. And finally, there was member of Parliament Krsto Mukoski who, in his infinite wisdom, decided to open the doors to the Parliament. It is perverse that Mukoski is now free, but those who followed him are sentenced to 200 years in prison, Pandov said.

The Zaev regime used the trial to blackmail a number of VMRO-DPMNE members of Parliament like Mukoski to vote for the imposed name change. They were given amnesty but the punishment for the mere protesters was at the maximum degree.

Pandov noted that the planned protests are not only a Macedonian affair – the defendants include a Croatian, a Bosniak and an Albanian, all swept up in the massive show trial.

The trial was designed to instill fear into the people, to silence us and to rule by fear, Pandov added.

The protest takes place on Sunday – it begins at 11h at the Government building and the protesters will continue to the Parliament building.