BELGRADE – Several thousand people protested in FYROM’s (Macedonia) capital, Skopje, for the eighth day on April 19, calling for President Gjorge Ivanov to resign.
The country’s political crisis began last year when the opposition accused the government of illegally wiretapping some 20,000 people, including politicians, judges, police, journalists, and diplomats.
Then-prime minister Nikola Gruevski, who stepped down in January, has denied the claims and has instead accused opposition leader Zoran Zaev of plotting a coup.
During the past week, Ivanov granted amnesty to 56 officials alleged to be involved in the scandal, sparking sometimes violent protests in Skopje.
Ivanov said he issued the pardons to protect national interests, and insisted he wouldn’t change his decision.
The European Union and the United States criticized the pardons, and EU enlargement minister Johannes Hahn publicly questioned whether credible parliamentary elections scheduled for June were still possible.