Address оn the occasion of awarding the Order to the Intelligence Agency
Friday, 24 March 2017 19:53

Distinguished Attendees,
Esteemed Excellencies,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Dear Friends,

As President of the Republic of Macedonia and Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, I constantly make decisions within the scope of my competences - foreign policy, security and defense.

From my personal experience, I know that the key to making correct decisions is the truth. Only when we know what is true and what is false, we can make a decision for the benefit of the citizens and the state. But this is becoming more difficult. Truth has never had so many enemies as it has today. In our age of post-truth, it is very easy to be misled by false news, alternative facts and ubiquitous propaganda. In other words, from the leaves of the lies often we cannot see the stem and the root of the challenge we face.

The new era of the harsh 21st century is a time of complex wars, in which the first casualty is the truth. Therefore, we need a guardian of the truth. In such conditions, extremely important role have the institutions which not only filter out the truth from falsehood, but, with the analytical approach, offer solutions to the challenges we face.

For already 20 years, one agency plays such a role. It is the Intelligence Agency of the Republic of Macedonia. During its establishment, the Intelligence Agency was entrusted with the key to understanding and verification of the truth related to the security threats and risks. Thanks to its sound analysis and research of data and information, state officials can make decisions for the benefit of the citizens and the state.

The Agency constantly informs us about the processes that generate threats to the national security and the enduring and vital values. Thus, the Agency helps us make decisions in order to establish a stable security environment and sustainable development in the long term.

In these 20 years, the Agency helped us avoid many wrong decisions, but also to cope easier with the major ordeals we have faced as a country.

It is enough to recall the first decade of independence, when, in the immediate vicinity of the Republic of Macedonia, wars were fought, frontiers were changed, new states were formed. In such complex conditions, we managed to preserve the peace.

In the second decade of independence, the things changed. The region was pacified and democratized. The countries began to cooperate and jointly paved the European and Euro-Atlantic path. However, the threats did not disappear, just took new forms.

Today, in the third decade of independence of the Republic of Macedonia, our strategic security environment is changing again. The insufficient presence of the European Union contributed to the retrograde processes in our region. We are witnessing an open interference in the internal affairs of the country. The geopolitical picture of the world is also changing. There are new threats and new risks. Illegal migration, violent extremism, foreign terrorist fighters and transnational organized crime are just some of the numerous challenges faced daily by the Republic of Macedonia.

Yet, we managed to face and manage these challenges, owing to our intelligence and security system, whose important part is the Intelligence Agency of the Republic of Macedonia.

Through early warning, assessments and projections, as well as timely Information, the Agency helps us prevent the threats and safeguard the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Macedonia. And, it does so within the legal frames.

Therefore, I have great honor, as President and Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Macedonia, on behalf of the citizens, to award the Order „Ilinden 1903" to the Intelligence Agency. This award is a token of gratitude of the Macedonian citizens for all that the Agency has been doing in the past years, even when it is not visible to the public. But, at the same time, this award is a commitment for the Agency to continue, with even greater zeal, to professionally perform its statutory obligations. Primarily, to continue with the exercise of the fundamental state interests of the Republic and its citizens.

At the very end, I assure you that, in a time when we face major internal and external challenges, we are not afraid because we are aware that we will persevere in our goal. We are aware because our decisions are based on two values - truth and justice for our homeland, the Republic of Macedonia.

Thank you.

Обраќање на свеченоста по повод Денот на резервните сили кај караулата „Рамна Нива“
Friday, 10 March 2017 14:26
There are no translations available.

Почитуван началник на Генералштабот на Армијата на Република Македонија,

Пoчитуван претседател на Сојузот на резервни старешини на Република Македонија,

Господа генерали,

Претставници на медиумите,

Драги пријатели,

На денешен ден пред дваесет и пет години, токму на ова место, на караулата „Рамна Нива", припадниците на резервниот состав гордо го подигнаа знамето на Република Македонија. Тој чин беше почеток на заокружувањето на еден од неопходните атрибути на самостојноста на Република Македонија, а тоа формирање на сопствена армија. Во време кога во нашиот регион беснееше безбедносна бура, а некои од нашите соседи се сомневаа во нашата државотворност, ние одлучно започнавме да ги обезбедуваме државните граници на нашата млада држава.

Од своето осамостојување до денес, Република Македонија води политика и гради систем што ќе овозможи нејзина целосна евроатлантска интеграција,  во согласност со нејзините интереси, потреби и можности. Трансформацијата и модернизацијата на одбранбениот систем претставуваат наша цврста определба и обврска која и покрај некои објективни потешкотии, успешно се реализираат.

Армијата на Република Македонија го сочинува највиталниот дел на единствениот одбранбен систем на Република Македонија и како таква во изминатиот период даде најголем придонес за исполнувањето на високите стандарди на полето на одбраната. Тоа се покажува и со успешното и професионално справување со заканата од илегалната миграција на нашата јужна граница.

Во периодот од дваесет и петте години развој, Армијата на Република Македонија се развива со целосно професионален состав, дизајнирана со структура на сили со развиени соодветни родовски компоненти.

Сето ова ни овозможува, нам, како членка во меѓународните организации, заедно со земјите членки на НАТО, а особено со земјите од непосредното и поширокото соседство, активно да учествуваме во градењето на интегративните процеси на полето на одбраната и безбедноста.

За мене, како Претседател на Република Македонија, е вистинска чест да бидам врховен командант на вооружените сили кои со толкава посветеност ја извршуваат својата уставна и законска задача.

Obrakjanje_Karaula_Ramna_niva_02Ценети присутни,

Резервниот состав одигра клучна улога во самите почетоци на нашата армија. Како тогаш, така и денес, 25 години подоцна, за нашата татковина развојот на резервниот состав поставува важна задача. Современите безбедносни предизвици со кои се соочуваме од нас бараат примена на современ, унифициран и сеопфатен систем за образование и обука како на активниот, така и на резервниот состав на Армијата на Република Македонија.

Развојот на активен и резервен армиски состав, опремен со борбени вештини, способности и знаења за извршување на различни мисии како во земјата така и надвор од нејзините граници е клучен за две нешта:

Прво, доследно извршување на мисијата и задачите кои на Армијата на Република Македонија ѝ се доделени со Уставот и со законите на Република Македонија.

И второ, достигнување на интероперабилност и компатибилност со земјите членки на НАТО.

Односот помеѓу активната и резервната компонента на Армијата на Република Македонија мора да го трансформираме во согласност со мисијата и со задачите на АРМ, прилагодени за ефикасна одбрана на целата територија на Република Македонија. Во функција на ова, приоритетна цел за нас ќе биде одбранбеното планирање, кое јасно ја дефинира потребата од изедначување на оспособеноста и опременоста на резервата на ниво на активната компонента.

Поаѓајќи од сопствените потреби, а во согласност со современите трендови, резервните сили треба да се трансформираат во поефикасна вооружена компонента, со соодветна и прилагодена организациска структура.

Затоа, главна задача на Министерството за одбрана и на Генералштабот на АРМ е дополнително да ја зацврстат поврзаноста меѓу активниот и резервниот состав. Ваквиот сериозен приод кон резервата во иднина ќе значи редефинирање на резервата во одбранбениот систем и несомнено вклучување на сите субјекти од одбраната во процесот на планирање на обуката, вежбите и опременоста на резервата, во насока таа во наредниот период постепено да се изедначува со активниот состав.

Почитувани присутни,

Ќе завршам онака како што започнав.

И денес, како и пред четврт век, се соочуваме со предизвици. Но, и денес, како и пред четврт век, ја имаме Армијата на Република Македонија која е заштитник од заканите, гордост на граѓаните и надеж за мир во земјата.

Токму од ова место, кревањето на македонското знаме го означи остварувањето на вековниот стремеж на генерации востаници, илинденци и борци за слободата на Македонија. Знамето што пред четврт век се крена тука, на Рамна Нива, претставуваше јасна и недвосмислена порака дека ова е територија на суверена и независна држава. Држава која е мирољубива и отворена за соработка со сите добронамерници. Но, истовремено, држава со своја сопствена армија која е подготвена по секоја цена да ги штити територијалниот интегритет и независноста на Република Македонија.

Ви благодарам.

Address by the President of the Republic of Macedonia, Dr. Gjorge Ivanov
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 16:08

Dear citizens of the Republic of Macedonia,

Two days ago, on February 27, I was submitted evidence that a majority in the Assembly of the  Republic of Macedonia is to be created. On that occasion, I congratulated the parties that managed to create the majority since it is an important step to get out of the crisis.

Today I invited the leader of the Social Democratic Union of Macedonia, Mr. Zoran Zaev, at a consultative meeting regarding the decision on awarding the mandate to constitute the Government of the Republic of Macedonia.

At the meeting I informed him on all legal opinions that I received yesterday from competent legal experts. According to them, in accordance with Article 90, majority has been achieved and it is the basis to award the mandate for constitution of the Government.

However, according to the legal experts, there is a problem with the deadlines.

Namely, to comply with Article 90 of the Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia, it is necessary the deadlines set forth in the Constitution to be met.

Meeting the deadlines is necessary for the transfer of power to be legal and legitimate. We have discussed several solutions how to overcome the problem with the deadlines and award the mandate and the decision not to violate Article 90 of the Constitution.

This issue can be overcome easily since there are solutions, especially now when a majority in the Assembly is secured. Otherwise, my decision to grant the mandate without observing the period of 10 days provided for in Article 90 may be challenged.

I recommended Mr. Zaev to make consultations and inform me about their position to the offered solutions.

I suggested sticking to the established practice since 1992, when, in the three attempts to form a government, the deadlines of 10 days set forth in the Constitution were respected. I was informed that the Social Democratic Union of Macedonia maintains that the deadlines given in the Constitution and the established practice since 1992 are not an obstacle to be granted the mandate and asked for immediate granting of the mandate.

Despite this formal-legal obstacle, there is a more fundamental problem. It concerns the following:

After the elections, we were unpleasantly surprised by a post-election political platform of a foreign country. The platform is a post-election document drafted and signed in a foreign country, in the office of a foreign statesman, mediated by the Prime Minister of that foreign country. The content of the platform goes beyond the Constitution and the Ohrid Framework Agreement.

This platform endangers the sovereignty and independence of the state, bringing it in a position of subordination or dependence in relation to another country. With this platform, the Republic of Macedonia is blackmailed and its integrity, sovereignty and independence are threatened.

The process of post-electoral coalition and formation of a new government has become hostage to this post-election platform of a foreign country. Instead of finally getting out of the political crisis, this platform, unfortunately, pushes us in an even deeper crisis that questions the fundamental national interests of the Republic of Macedonia and its citizens.

I expected a long while certain political parties to show statehood and maturity and publicly refuse to even speak about such foreign post-election platforms.

Unfortunately, we saw that instead of immediately and without discussion to dismiss it, some started to bid with it, being unaware that they actually bid with the unitary character of the state, the identity of the citizens and the state interests. No one can negotiate the nature and the future of the country nor can lead non-transparent discussions. The citizens are entitled to know the truth of the content of the talks.

However, there is a solution for this issue, too. During the meeting, I asked Mr. Zaev to publicly and clearly reject and condemn this platform, because the Macedonian citizens casted their votes at the election for reform and fulfillment of the obligations of the Przino Agreement and not for post-election platform of a foreign state.

Hence, the second fundamental objection is that the talks about the content or negotiating a platform of a foreign country is contrary to the Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia.

Moreover, negotiation and acceptance of a foreign platform is an offense under the Criminal Code because it means bringing the Republic of Macedonia in a position of subordination or dependence in relation to another country.

Dear fellow citizens,

We expect the international community to clearly and publicly condemn such a platform which is unscrupulous interference in internal affairs and redefinition of the unitary character of our country.

We remember well that the international community expressed such views when other countries in the region were concerned. Unfortunately, there was no such public condemnation in the case of Macedonia. This loud silence confirms that Macedonia's future depends on us only, its citizens and its institutions.

My message is clear. Once it refrained from judging the platform that endangers the sovereignty and integrity of the Republic of Macedonia, the international community should also refrain from imposing solutions contrary to the national interests of the Republic of Macedonia.

Dear fellow citizens,

Negotiating a platform of a foreign country means denying the sovereignty and independence of the Republic of Macedonia as stated in Article 1 of the Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia.

The Republic of Macedonia's sovereignty derives from the citizens and it belongs to the citizens. None of the citizens has given the right to any democratically elected representative, negotiating a post-election platform of a foreign state, to threaten the sovereignty of the Republic of Macedonia.

The Macedonian citizens voted at the elections for party programs and not for a post-election platform of a foreign state.

These are serious times in the history of the Republic of Macedonia. Every one of us has to behave most responsibly, because every wrong decision can have incalculable and catastrophic consequences for the future of the country.

When I took the office of President of the Republic of Macedonia, under the Constitution, at the session in the Assembly, I gave a solemn oath and obliged myself to act conscientiously and responsibly, to respect the Constitution and the laws and to protect the sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence of the Republic of Macedonia.

According to the oath I have given, neither the Constitution nor my conscience allows me to give the mandate to anyone who disturbs the sovereignty and in dependence of the Republic of Macedonia.

Dear fellow citizens,

I hear some accuse me that with my past actions I have abused my official position and that I could be criminally charged thereof. I encourage the initiators to do so. I urge those who threaten me these days to challenge my responsibility under the Constitution. And, on this occasion, I clearly announce that there are no threats and blackmail that would force me to violate the Constitution.

But, at the same time, I encourage them to file criminal charges under the Criminal Code of the Republic of Macedonia against anyone who puts the Republic of Macedonia in a position of subordination and dependence in relation to another country.

In accordance with Article 84 of the Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia, I will not give the mandate for constitution of the Government of the Republic of Macedonia to anyone who negotiates platforms of other countries that blackmail the Macedonian people, endanger the integrity of the state, its sovereignty and independence

Foreign post-election platforms cannot and must not be the basis for the formation of the Government of the Republic of Macedonia.

Dear fellow citizens,

We have no other country. The Republic of Macedonia is the only country we have. We have no historic right to destroy what generations fought and died for. They left us this country to leave it to the still unborn, our children and descendants.

Therefore, I want to assure you, the citizens, that you can be at peace.

As long as I am President of the Republic of Macedonia, I will not give the mandate to any person or a party that advocates with its program or platform destruction of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence of the Republic of Macedonia. For I am deeply convinced that these are fundamental values nobody has the right to trade with. And I do not think to make any concessions.

Thank you.

Statement after consultations with political parties represented in the Assembly of the Republic of Macedonia
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 19:37

izjava_konsultaciiRespected citizens of the Republic of Macedonia,

For already two and a half years we are going through a deep political crisis. The long-awaited elections were held recently which we hoped would provide a way out of this situation. But, instead of final resolution of the crisis, it entered a new stage.

In the past period we heard various interpretations of the Constitution. Everyone interprets it as he or she wants or as it fits him or her.

I, as President, gave an oath that I will respect the Constitution and the laws of the Republic of Macedonia. The Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia reflects our authentic Macedonian reality. Not only that it cannot be interpreted according to one's party wishes and interests, but the Constitution is used to measure everything else.

Article 90 of the Constitution is clear: "The President of the Republic of Macedonia is obliged, within 10 days of the constitution of the Assembly, to entrust the mandate for constituting the Government to a candidate from the party or parties which has/have a majority in the Assembly."

Not coincidentally, the creator of the Constitution foresaw only one article in the Constitution - it is Article 90. The intention of the legislator who did not define in detail the possible actions of the President in such or similar situations, means that he gives freedom for the actions and assessments of the President.

I used my constitutional right and obligation. Guided by the letter of the Constitution, and after the consultations held on January 9, 2017, I entrusted the mandate to Mr. Nikola Gruevski. Thus, I observed the provisions of the Constitution, but I also remained consistent to the current practice.

Respected fellow citizens,

I decided to make consultations with the relevant institutions and political parties. The purpose of the consultations was to share my views, hear the opinions and views of my interlocutors not only on the priorities and national interests but also on the way out not only of the political but also of what looks more like a constitutional and institutional crisis.

Following the consultations, I want to inform you that the mandate for constitution of a new government will be entrusted to the party or coalition that will inform me and prove it has secured a majority in the Parliament. In other words - first confirmation and proof of majority and then mandate to form a government, in accordance with Article 90 of the Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia.

As I already pointed out in my annual address to you, the citizens, I expect of those who will constitute the new government to include two key priorities in their program:

First, protection of the state interests of the Republic of Macedonia, which implies preserving and strengthening the unitary character of the state.
Second, systemic reform after the crisis, which will cover the entities of the national security system of the Republic of Macedonia.

During the consultations, we discussed all the possibilities and options in case no one secures a majority in Parliament.
All options remain open.

Whatever happens, I assure you that I will act solely in the interest of the state and the citizens of the Republic of Macedonia.
When I was elected President of the Republic of Macedonia, I gave a solemn oath to the citizens that I will respect the Constitution and the laws. Even now, I do not think of making any concessions from the oath I have given.

Thank you.

Annual Reception for the diplomatic corps
Friday, 27 January 2017 19:57

Struga1Distinguished representatives of the diplomatic corps,

Ladies and Gentlemen,
Dear friends,

At the beginning of this New Year 2017, it is my honor to welcome you here, by the Ohrid Lake. Only a few miles away from here is the city of poetry – Struga, the center of Macedonian enlightenment in the 19th century. Poets say that beauty will save the world. Let us hope it will be that way, because this world does need salvation.

This will be my 8th address to the diplomatic corps in the Republic of Macedonia.
This year, I would not like to repeat what has already been said.

I will not speak about the political crisis in the Republic of Macedonia. The only thing I will share is my expectation that the political parties, in this post-election period of negotiations, will take into consideration the state interests of the Republic of Macedonia and the national interests of the Macedonian people.

I will not remind you either, that the status quo in terms of European and Euro-Atlantic integration is part of the problem, and not the solution to the political crisis in the Republic of Macedonia.

Instead, I'd rather talk about the challenges standing not only before the Republic of Macedonia, but also the Balkans, Europe and the world.

We left the year 2016 behind us, recognized as an annu horribili – a horrible year during which we felt most strongly the consequences of double standards, lack of respect for international law, failed states and ravaged societies.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Under the pressure of economic scarcity, environmental degradation and absence of basic safety and security, millions of people began their pursuit for a life of human dignity.

Unfortunately, it was proven that mass migration is a subject to double abuse. On one hand, the threat of illegal migration is an instrument for non-military pressure in conflict and crisis management. Those who wish to exercise pressure on a certain state, simply "export" and direct migrants on their route to the final destination. On the other hand, radicals, extremists and foreign terrorist fighters take advantage of the misfortune of migrants and refugees to infiltrate unnoticed in other countries. All of this, unfortunately, contributed to the rise of polarization and xenophobia in European societies.

In this context, in spite of the internal political crisis, Macedonia showed that it has stable institutions, as seen in the management of the migration crisis and reduction of security risks. I wish to thank all European countries which helped us in this area.

However, in such circumstances, all of us are faced with two key challenges. The first one would be to ensure control of corridors used by migrants. The second - to secure the free movement of migrants who are already inside the Schengen territory.

Many European states will be faced with a tough choice – either to activate the crisis management system in order to handle illegal migration, or to declare a state of emergency due to the security crisis and threats from foreign terrorist fighters.

The solution of both these issues lies in a closer cooperation and exchange of information. Unfortunately, instead of trust and cooperation, what we are witnessing is more mistrust and dissociation.

Dear participants,

This year 2017 will mark six decades since the Treaties of Rome. During its first 50 years, the European Union was a very promising project. However, in its sixth decade, the Union is at a historic crossroad. The unresolved credit, the current migration, and the growing security crisis have paralyzed European institutions. Internationalism is withdrawing before growing nationalism. At the same time, instead of a deeper integration, we have an increasingly visible regionalization.

The absence of the European Union and NATO resounds in the Balkans and might endanger the stability of our region. In the last period, we hear rhetoric and see actions that are in many aspects, very reminiscent of the time we thought was long forgotten – the period of disintegration of a former common country.

The great Einstein said: "Weak people revenge. Strong people forgive. Intelligent people ignore." For a while I did not comment on the statements and actions of some politicians from the region but because I believed that they can only be isolated if ignored. Although they do not deserve a comment, I will say, though, that opening old wounds and interfering in the internal affairs of countries could jeopardize good neighborly relations. Good neighborly relations, as we know, are not a one way, but a two way street.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I have underlined on many occasions the benefits of the Macedonian inclusive democratic model. The Republic of Macedonia is not at all ashamed or trying to suppress its multiethnic, multireligious and multilingual tradition. On the contrary. Not only are we not afraid of it, but we even institutionalized it. Therefore, I would recommend to some of the neighboring leaders to also face the truth about the ethnic, religious and linguistic diversity in their own societies. I would recommend them to pay more attention to the ethnic, religious and linguistic communities living in their countries, in accordance with the highest international standards. We are ready to help them in that area with our positive experiences and lessons learned.

The Republic of Macedonia is not the only country in the region with internal challenges. Unfortunately, all of our neighbors are facing internal challenges. Instead of wasting their energy dealing with the weaknesses of other countries, it would be better if some neighboring leaders first dealt with the weaknesses of their own countries. They were elected by the citizens to deal with their problems, and not the problems and challenges of other countries.

As a region, we simply do not have the time to deal with the retrograde rhetoric from the 19th century, showing who is more powerful and making unconstructive steps that do not reflect the third millennium. We have serious challenges ahead of us. We must dedicated our entire attention and invest all our energy in successfully tackling those challenges. And we cannot do that individually.

In conditions when the Union is facing numerous challenges, and other international organizations is blocked, we need a strategic regional introspection. What does this mean? It is necessary to cooperate in the area of regional security in order to resist global security threats and risks. It is necessary to connect the regional market in order to be competitive at the global market. This because, only through solidarity will we be able to build a region of security, stability and wellbeing.

With this message, at the end, I extend my wishes for well-being and progress of your countries and peoples, and to you personally, much happiness, good health and success.

Thank you.


Address at the Nizami Ganjavi Forum, entitled: Democratic security in times of extremism and violence
Saturday, 14 January 2017 16:06

Kairo1webDistinguished attendees,

As President of the Republic of Macedonia, it is my honor to address this prestigious forum organized by the Bibliotheca Alexandrina and the Nizami Ganjavi Internatonal Center. These few days, here in Egypt, one of the cradles of the ancient civilization, we will have the opportunity to discuss the challenges that our modern civilization is facing. By discussing democratic security in a time of extremism and violence in the second decade of the 21st century, we are merely confirming the thought of a great philosopher who once said that the only thing we have learned from history is that we have actually learned nothing.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

"Humanity is in the best condition when it has the greatest degree of liberty", Alighieri once said.

However, liberty has many enemies. The aim of tyrants has always been to limit freedom to the smallest possible space – the space between our two ears, keeping our mouths closed in the process. Therefore, the entire history of human struggle for freedom is consumed by the clash between the passion of ideals and the power of interests; between the higher principles and narrow-minded politics.

Today, as we are spending the second decade of the third millennium, we are facing an old dilemma on the relationship between freedom and security. And yet, there is always something new to be said, no matter how old the subject matter is.

"In a way beset with those that contend, on one side for too great Liberty, and on the other side for too much Authority, 'tis hard to passe between the points of both unwounded", said Hobbes. With that, he exposed his dilemma: if you want security, then you renounce liberty. If, on the other hand, you want liberty, then you renounce security.

Many a mind has fought with this dilemma and has tried to establish what is more important – freedom or security? Can there be freedom without security? Is freedom the price to be paid for living safely?

In the 19th and 20th century, many tried to square that particular circle through liberal democracy as a system capable of establishing a balance between freedom and security. During the Cold War, the limited and controlled government of Western Liberal democracies was supposed to offer an alternative to the unlimited and total power of Eastern popular democracies.

This introduced, in a grand way, the paradigm on democracy, human rights and freedoms in the zenith of political and public debate. However, this paradigm that won in 1989, barely survived for a decade. Right then, when many people believed that Hobbes' dilemma had been successfully resolved, the 21st century threw us back in the hands of the harsh reality.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Today, many strong social, political, security and technological processes are plotting against freedom.

In a world in which the strong do what they want, and the weak what they must, the rule of law has been reduced to an exception rather than a rule. Instead of international security and order, we have an absence of security and disorder. Instead of respect for diversity, we are increasingly witnessing persecutions and destruction of diversity.

Ever since the beginning of this millennium, we have been in an open fight against global terrorism. We are facing a serious challenge in this area. For every terrorist group and organization destroyed, it seems that two others appear. From a non-state actor, ISIL transformed itself into a quasi-state one, capable of absorbing defeats, withdrawing, regrouping and attacking again - even far from the territory under its direct control.

In conditions of multiplied threats that international organizations are unable to offer solutions against, internationalism is withdrawing before growing nationalism. Extreme threats call for extreme measures. Security seems to have become more important than human rights and freedoms, the latter becoming themselves the first victim of fear of states and their citizens. Or, as Costas Douzinas put it, "The optimistic age of globalised hope has turned into the dark era of fear."

We see the new order arising from two extremes – the wish for lasting peace on one hand, and the threats of constant wars on the other. Fighting against terrorism and extremism, the modern state has been expanding its authorizations and competences, thus shrinking the space of human rights and freedoms.

After every terrorist attack, states declare states of emergency or crises. We know indeed that a state of crisis or emergency is a state of extreme jeopardy, a danger for the very existence of a country. The Sovereign is the one who decides whether there is an extreme state of urgency, and on what needs to be done in order for such a situation to be overcome. But, what is that measure?

The Republic of Macedonia was the first country in Europe to declare a state of crisis due to the threat from illegal migration and deployed the Army at the border. However, we never used this state of crisis or emergency to expand the state's competences and limit human rights, including the rights of migrants.

Still, today our states and societies are facing a new, serious risk. A state of crisis or emergency is an exception suspending part of the rights or freedoms in order to preserve the very order that makes it possible to have those rights and freedoms. However, in conditions of permanent danger, a crisis situation becomes a rule rather than an exception, whereas civil rights and freedoms are reduced to an exception almost by default. If a crisis is an exception from normality, then a permanent state of crisis would mean that crisis has turned into the new normal. The entire system has been turned upside down.

Faced with this condition, some even raise a new dilemma: What is the bigger threat? Is it the unpredictable extremists and terrorists who destroy human lives, or perhaps the powerful governments that know every aspect of the private lives of citizens?

In such circumstances, it appears that democracy is less able to offer security and safety. Throughout the world, democratic societies are in crisis. There is a global feeling of mistrust towards states, which are becoming increasingly bureaucratized, without offering solutions to crises and challenges. One author notes that "in the long run, Western democracies are exclusively moving towards an increased power of the state, greater dependency on the state and bigger public expense and debt."

Globalization only multiplied this effect. In its recent report on global trends, the US National Intelligence Council assesses that globalization and technological development enriched the richest and saved one billion people from living in poverty. However, at the same time they suppressed the middle class, thus creating resistance against globalization.

In this context, we are witnessing the rage of people against the imposed globalist paradigm of elites. Citizens wish to regain their freedom, having in mind that they never really obtained security. And when a state is unable to guarantee the safety of its citizens, one for which they had previously renounced part of their freedoms, then citizens organize themselves in order to achieve security.

I do not wish to be misunderstood. Churchill said that democracy might not be perfect, but is the best thing we have had so far. The problem is not in the democratic ideal, but the bureaucratized system that does not offer solutions.

Therefore, we need a new modus that will enable us to maintain security and respect human rights and freedoms. This looks like a mission impossible at first glance. But only because we tend to see things through the prism of the old paradigm. We need other books and authors. We need a redefinition of concepts.

First. In the fight against terrorism, we must understand that we are not dealing with an organization, but rather a movement driven by an idea that goes way beyond ethnic, linguistic and cultural differences. In order to win the fight against terrorism, military troops and technology are not enough. It is also necessary to fight with ideas. Killing and terror are now a result of religion, but of a perverted interpretation of religion, immorality of individuals with hearts of stone, and arrogant souls with a completely distorted sense of logic. We need to counter radicalization with counter-radicalization programs.

Secondly, there is much talk about human rights and freedoms, but one of the fundamental rights is neglected - the right to freedom of thought, conscience and faith. Persecuting people of different faith and belief has become more emphasized, not only in non-secular, but also in developed secular societies. It is indispensable to guarantee freedom in the true sense of that word. People need to understand that the freedom they desire for themselves should also be allowed to others, and that their own freedom will not be lasting unless others enjoy the same.

Thirdly, overcoming double standards. Who decides what news is and what will be on the cover pages? We are witnessing a selective approach. In the light of media exploited terrorist attacks in Europe, is anyone actually counting the Muslim victims in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria ...? Has someone stopped to ask themselves how many Muslim men, women and children have been killed these last few years in the Middle East and Northern Africa? But, at the same time, we know about statistics that have been completely ignored by mainstream media. Between 2005 and 2015, in only 10 years, 900.000 Christians tragically lost their lives because of their faith. It makes an average of 90.000 Christians every year. I have never heard global media addressing this subject to this day.

Fourth – an economically fair system. The gap between the rich global North and the poor global South is growing deeper. Out of seven billion people, only one billion is living comfortably. 767 million people are living in a situation of extreme poverty. It is no wonder, then, that millions of economic migrants without any hope for social mobility in their home countries wish to come to Europe. Therefore, we need a sustainable and inclusive order, whose aim will not only be the economic, but also the social and environmental aspect of development.

At the end, I believe that the implementation of these ideas could help us get out of the trap that we fell into by reading the wrong authors. With that, we will enable states to fight against terrorism and extremism in a way consistent to the rights and freedoms of citizens.

Thank you.


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