Menduh Thaci, the leader of the ethnic Albanian DPA party, says that the coalition between SDSM and BESA, which is the first pre-election coalition between what used to be a Macedonia party and an Albanian party, is borne out of necessity. Thaci says that VMRO-DPMNE leads SDSM in the polls, which prompted SDSM leader Zoran Zaev to ask for help in the Albanian camp.

I support a coalition between Macedonian and Albanian parties, but not like this. This coalition was created because, judging by the polls, VMRO is ahead of SDSM, Thaci said.

During its heyday DPA was promoting the concept of a principles based coalition with VMRO-DPMNE, with both parties sharing a conservative outlook. But it was ultimately pushed out by DUI, which promoted the principle of coalitions between the winning Macedonian and winning Albanian parties. DPA was rumored to be considering a pre-election coalition with SDSM this time around, but judging by Thaci’s comments these talks didn’t go well.