VMRO-DPMNE is close to reaching a coalition agreement with the Albanian opposition parties – Alliance of Albanians and Alternative, said VMRO leader Hristijan Mickoski. This move is becoming increasingly important for the opposition parties after SDSM and DUI announced that they will support each other’s candidates in the elections.

We are in the final stage of talks with the Albanian opposition parties, so that we can act together in the first round of the elections, and our coalition will defeat the incompetence, the humiliations and the theft of the ruling coalition, Mickoski said.

VMRO requires Albanian votes in the race against SDSM for the capital Skopje, and possibly Kumanovo, while the Albanian parties will need VMRO votes to beat DUI in the municipalities where Albanians constitute the majority – such as Tetovo and Gostivar.

Mickoski said that he will present other mayoral candidates on Friday, adding that many of them will be new, fresh faces. He praised the nomination of Natasa Kotlar for Mayor of Centar, even though she doesn’t come from the party ranks, by saying that professor Kotlar is “an exceptional candidate which shows that the party will not insist on having insider candidates at any cost”.