North Macedonia - Articoli

Is Macedonia's EU Dream Fading?

20/09/2010 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

Macedonians looking at themselves through a Eurobarometre survey find out that they have lost confidence in the European Union. A 6% drop in 12 months is puzzling for the country. Discussing the nature of the end of the great illusion some point out that reality has inevitably struck. And maybe this is not a bad thing


Macedonia: Media Freedom Under Threat

05/07/2010 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

In Early June, the EU Commission had to remind the Macedonian government that freedom of expression and of the media are fundamental rights and the basis of democratic societies. The reaction followed that of the European Federation of Journalists, which condemned the “scandalous neglect” of the safety of journalists in the country


Macedonia: Stuck in the Waiting Room

14/06/2010 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

Although it was the first country in the region to sign a Stabilization and Association Agreement (SAA) with the EU, Macedonia seems to have slid backward in the accession queue, and will probably be stuck in a waiting room for a long time


The Greek Crisis Seen from Skopje: So near, so far

13/05/2010 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

Quite surprisingly, Macedonians have little interest in the Greek crisis on the other side of their southern border. Financial authorities forecast limited risks for the country, while some secretly rejoice at the difficulties of Macedonia’s opponent in the name dispute of the past decades


Business Incubator

06/04/2010 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

Two of the most important sectors in the Balkans - economic growth and development cooperation – are becoming increasingly intertwined. For the first time, Macedonia is developing the 'business incubator' model of fostering young enterprises. Not-for-profit actors are implementing the strategy. An interview.


Macedonia: frozen conflict on the name front

18/02/2010 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

After PASOK won the last elections in Greece, Athens and Skopje are seemingly communicating again. Yet, the name dispute does not seem close to an end, and today's hopes rely on a more direct involvement of the EU


Regards from Mavrovo

09/02/2010 -  Risto Karajkov Mavrovo

Environmental protection, sustainable development, and international cooperation at work in Macedonia's largest national park. Our correspondent visited the area of Mavrovo lake


Macedonia: He who sings means no evil

30/12/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

Recently, a group of young protesters from Skopje seems to have chosen music as the credo of their civic and political activism. They protest by singing. They call themselves Raspeani Skopjani [Singing Skopjans], and their popularity has been growing


Macedonia name issue: The Bucharest Summit Syndrome Redux

03/12/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

According to the European Commission, Macedonia is ready for the accession negotiations, but needs to solve the dispute with Greece first. Despite some positive signals between Skopje and Athens, like the meeting between Gruevski and Papandreou, the country expects a further disappointment


The partial fall of the Schengen wall

10/12/2009 -  Mustafa Canka Podgorica

On 30 November, the Council of Interior Ministers of the EU approved the request to cancel visa requirements for citizens from Serbia, Macedonia, and Montenegro. Citizens from these countries will be able to travel freely to EU countries starting from 19 December. The reactions from Podgorica, Montenegro.


Pseudo-Emigrant Cabaret

28/09/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

With their passionate, non-conventional music, theatrical contaminations, and growing domestic and international success, "Foltin" looks like the next best thing in Macedonian music. Osservatorio interviewed the group's singer and front-man Branko Nikolov


Invest in Macedonia?

25/06/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

Macedonia ranks third, after the United States and France, in Google searches for the term "invest in". Of course, the real level of foreign investment is most important, but this search statistic is a relevant statistic of the country's visibility as a possible destination for foreign investments


The Shara mountain sheepdog

19/06/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

He has been guarding sheep and shepherds' families around the Balkans for centuries. When Macedonia became independent in 1991, the Shara mountain sheepdog was given a place on the new Macedonian one denar coin


Last in Lustration

05/06/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

Macedonia is almost the last country in Eastern Europe, together with Albania, to pass legislation on lustration. Under the law's provisions, practically every public officeholder will have to swear they had not worked for the secret services


Alexander from Florence

07/05/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

On May 4, daily Dnevnik revealed to its readers secret contracts between the Skopje Municipality and the Fonderia Artistica Ferdinando Marinelli from Florence, for the production of a series of monuments, the biggest of whom is that of Alexander the Great, which will be 22 meters high


The government vs. the court

24/04/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

A few days before Easter, the Macedonian constitutional court cancelled a law enacted by the VMRO-DPMNE led government introducing optional religious education in public schools. This act marked the beginning of the fiercest dispute between the executive and highest judiciary institution


The Bull, the Beggar, and the Bimbo

22/04/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

The Bull, the Beggar, the Bimbo....These are only some of the sculptures the Macedonian government has been installing in the centre of Skopje as part of its recently launched architectural renewal spree.The process has not left anyone dispassionate, stirring political controversy over the city's urbanistic development


Macedonia elects new president

07/04/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

Gjorgji Ivanov has won the presidential elections with about 63 percent of the votes. The most important thing for the country, as is widely agreed, was the fact that the election was free and fair


Ten years down the road

30/03/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

Bombers crossed the sky by night and thousands of desperate people gathered at the borders by day. In Macedonia, at the time of the conflict in Kosovo, the smell of war was in the air. Back then, for most people in the country, it was as close as they had ever been to war in their lives


How to do well?

20/03/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

On 22 March, Macedonian citizens will go to the polls to elect a new president and new local governments. If Macedonia runs a good election, it might hope to get a date to start accession talks with the EU, perhaps by the end of 2009. But if the election doesn't go well, Macedonia can forget about it


Far away, so close?

13/03/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

Just before the start of the electoral campaign, Macedonian prime minister Gruevski announced a massive plan to invest in infrastructures. Little resources, though, seems to have been allocated to revive the "European Corridor 8", meant to link the Adriatic to the Black Sea


Who Are We? II

26/02/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

Macedonians have become bitter with each other. Over themselves. Over who they are. Over whether they are Slav or ancient Macedonians. Op-eds and commentaries have overwhelmed the press; the blogosphere has overheated. It all started because of a monument


Who Are We?

11/02/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

As presidential elections approach, Macedonians have become embroiled in a heated debate over who they are. The "identity issue" will clearly be a thorny one in the upcoming campaign. And while VMRO revives the myth of Alexander the Great, many Macedonians are still perfectly comfortable with their Slavic roots


The Fever, Again

02/02/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

Macedonia caught the fever again. Merely six months after the early national vote of June 2008, the country braces itself again for elections. The presidential and local vote will both be held on 22 March. For the past weeks, the country's biggest political issue concerns the possible candidates for future head of state


The Museum of Freedom

21/01/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

In Albanian communities accross Macedonia, it is easy to find monuments dedicated to the National Liberation Army. But the opening of a new museum dedicated to the NLA in Skopje stirred much controversy


Treasure Hunting

08/01/2009 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

In Macedonia, economic crisis has spurred a new trend: treasure hunters are increasingly scouring the furthest reaches of the country in pursuit of Ottoman gold, Roman antiquities and other treasures. Whether basing their searches on actual history or dubious legend, hunters are going to great lengths to cash in on the proverbial jackpot...often illegally.


The Big Bad Wolf

30/12/2008 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

As the paths of wolves increasingly overlap with those of humans, creating tension for shepherds, farmers and drivers, Macedonia has once again legalized killing of the animals after a year-long ban on wolf hunting


Dial M for Multiculturalism

18/12/2008 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

The government of Skopje is trying hard to pay respect to diversity. Some analysts argue that, despite a difficult start, Macedonia remains the only viable example of successful ethnic co-existence in the Balkans. This may also be an exaggerated statement, but it is worth thinking about it


Macedonia, Name Issue Arrives Before ICJ

19/11/2008 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

Skopje filed a petition against Greece at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on grounds of violation of the 1995 interim accord between the two countries. Skopje asks the ICJ to order Athens to refrain from further obstructing Macedonia's integration in international organizations


From Here to Eternity

12/11/2008 -  Risto Karajkov Skopje

The European Commission reports on acceding countries published last week did not bring any big surprises in Macedonia. The major news was already known - the country was not granted a date to start negotiations with Brussels