Monday, February 21, 2011

Macedonia Opposition Accepts Call for Early Elections

The leader of the opposition Social Democrats has accepted the prime minister’s call for early elections, though it is not clear they will reach agreement on a date for the polls.

Sinisa Jakov Marusic

“Snap polls are the best way to overcome the current political gridlock,” opposition leader Branko Crvenkivski said at a press conference on Monday.

But he insisted that government must first ensure they are free and fair. “Everything else would deepen and radicalize the crisis,” Crvenkovski said.

On late Sunday Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski said he would accept the opposition's calls for early elections and challenged them to compete in polls “as soon as possible”.

The Social Democrats, who began a boycott of parliament in late January, have reiterated their demands for reforms to improve the election law, clean the voter’s list of fictive voters that could be used for fraud and eliminate political interference in the judiciary.

The Social Democrats hope these reforms will be completed by April 20, after which the parliament could be dissolved and early elections called for mid June................................


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