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Thursday, May 24, 2007
Macedonia's foreign minister, Antonio Milososki, suggested on May 22 that a recent, renewed threat by Greece to veto Macedonia's bid for EU and NATO membership is linked to upcoming Greek parliamentary elections. In comments carried on May 22 by the news agency MIA, Milososki described Greece as being in a pre-election state and predicted that populist efforts will ensure that the dispute over Macedonia's name figures prominently in the campaign. Elections in Greece are schedule for March 2008, but there is speculation they could be brought forward to this autumn. Milososki was responding to a demand by Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis on May 21 that Macedonia 'abandon its intransigence.' Karamanlis said Greece, as an EU and NATO member, could block Macedonia's accession bids. Milososki rejected Greece's claim, saying 'we have made several concessions in the past 15 years, showing a large dose of constructiveness.' He added that it was Greece that rejected the latest proposal by a UN special envoy, Matthew Nimitz, while Macedonia accepted it (see 'RFE/RL Newsline,' May 18, 2007). Greece and Macedonia resumed UN-mediated talks on May 16, but the proposal mentioned by Milososki probably dates back to 2005 when Nimitz proposed that countries who currently recognize Macedonia by its constitutional name, the"
Srgjan Kerim is currently the general manager of South-Eastern Europe for WAZ Media Group. He was chosen by the Eastern European delegation to be its candidate for the assembly presidency and was elected by acclamation Thursday. The presidency rotates between regional blocs.
Kerim will replace Sheikha Haya Al Khalifa of Bahrain in September and will serve for one year."
Vatican, May. 24, 2007 (CWNews.com) - Pope Benedict XVI (bio - news) met on May 24 with delegations of officials from Bulgaria and Macedonia, who were visiting Rome in accordance with an annual tradition to honor Sts. Cyril and Methodius, who brought the Gospel to their nations.
The feast of Sts. Cyril and Methodius, co-patrons of Europe, is May 24 on the Orthodox liturgical calendar. (The Roman Catholic Church observes the feast on February 14.) The remains of the two 'apostles to the Slavs' are buried in the basilica of St. Clement in Rome, and delegations from Bulgaria and Macedonia vist to pray at the tomb each year.
Georgi Pirinski, the president of the Bulgarian parliament, led his country's delegation. In his remarks to the group, the Pope said that 'there can be no doubt that in the Gospel the country found a source of values capable of reinforcing the culture, identity and genius typical of its people.' The Pope added that after the 'sad and austere period of Communist domination' he saw Bulgaria taken an important new role in Europe, and said that he hoped the Christian cultural heritage of the nation would be strengthened.
To the Macedonian delegation-- also led by the president of that"
By Jan Buruma
Almost two decades after the fall of communism, Bulgarians are still wrestling with their totalitarian past. They do not yet have complete access to the files of the communist-era secret service (Darzhavna Sigurnost), but that is about to change. In June 2006, a legal deadline to open the files expired. But only in April 2007 has Bulgaria appointed a parliamentary commission to work on the topic.
The Bulgarian secret service was formally abolished in 1990, just after dictator Todor Zhivkov was forced to resign. Despite public pressure to open its archives like in other post-Soviet countries, in January 1990 most of the files were destroyed - those listing 46 percent of the secret services’ collaborators, 30 percent of those citizens who had been placed under surveillance and 91 percent of those who let facilities to the police.
The most high-profile case was the disappearance of the Georgi Markov file. Markov was a dissident writer and journalist who was famously killed in 1978 in London by a poisoned umbrella. KGB officers revealed in the 1990’s that they had cooperated on that case with their Bulgarian counterparts.
Bulgarian investigative journalist Hristo Hristov wrote the bestseller Kill"
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By C. J. CHIVERS
Published: May 16, 2007
MOSCOW, May 15 — Russia agreed Tuesday to tone down the harsh language its senior officials have used against the United States in recent months, but the two countries remained at an impasse on several issues that have strained relations.
The agreement to soften their public discourse was announced by the Kremlin after a meeting outside the capital between President Vladimir V. Putin and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, and seemed to signal a restoration of state cordiality in the face of lingering disagreements.
Ms. Rice’s two-day visit followed remarks by Mr. Putin on Red Square on May 9 that appeared to compare the United States to the Third Reich, the most severe of several such criticisms from him in his second term.
After the meeting, Ms. Rice told reporters that while she had not discussed the Third Reich comme"
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By MARK LANDLER
Published: May 16, 2007
BERLIN, May 15 — Electronic copies of documents from a closely guarded Nazi archive will start flowing to several countries for the first time since World War II, following an agreement announced Tuesday by the 11 countries that govern the archive in central Germany.
The decision could speed access by historians to a vast repository of material — most mundane, some revelatory — about 17.5 million people who passed through concentration camps or were otherwise victimized during and immediately after the Nazi period.
The archive has long restricted access to the documents to Holocaust victims’ family members, frustrating scholars who complained they were being deprived of access to a vital historical record.
“It is a very important decision for us because it means we can begin sending out copies of our document"
Macedonia Dispute Goes to the House
A Liberal MP puts forth a motion to recognize the Republic of Macedonia which stirs ire within the Liberal caucus and the Greek community.
By Lee Berthiaume
A private member's bill calling on the Canadian government to officially recognize the Republic of Macedonia was tabled in the House of Commons last week.
Lui Temelkovski, a Toronto-area parliamentarian who was born in what is now known as the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), introduced the bill in the House of Commons last Wednesday.
The naming dispute carries significant historical baggage that dates back centuries, but re-emerged as a current issue following the break up of Yugoslavia in the 1990s when several independent states emerged. One of those wanted to call itself the Republic of Macedonia. But Greece has vehemently opposed the idea, saying it implies ownership of a Greek province of the same name.
In introducing his bill, Mr. Temelkovski noted that numerous countries, including the United States, China and Russia, have recognized the state as the Republic of Macedonia.
Speaking to Embassy last Thursday, Mr. Temelkovski said his bill was prompted by lobbying on the part of the Macedonian community, which includes about 1"
Anthropologist Vasiliki Neofotistos studies ethnic relations between Macedonians, Albanians
By KEVIN FRYLING
Reporter Staff Writer
Growing up in Greece in the 1980s and '90s, Vasiliki Neofotistos had a front row seat to the breakup of the Balkans following the collapse of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
While working as a doctoral field researcher in Skopje, the capital of Macedonia, Neofotistos experienced firsthand the conflict between Macedonians and ethnic Albanians.
PHOTO: NANCY J. PARISI
She says the urge to learn more about the political and social upheaval to the north became the first step on a career path in political anthropology.
'I'm interested in questions of power in societies, conflict resolution and policy making,' says Neofotistos, an assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology, College of Arts and Sciences, who joined the UB faculty last fall. 'I've conducted research in the Republic of Macedonia and studied inter-ethnic relations between Macedonians and Albanians living in the country.'
She focuses on the relations between these two ethnic groups because of their political struggles for state power after the collapse of socialism, she says, but notes that Turks, Bosnians, Serbs and Roma are als"
Saturday, May 12, 2007
'We will reconstruct the Caspian shore gas pipeline with a capacity of 10 billion cubic metres (per year) and build a parallel gas pipeline.' Mr Putin said.
We will reconstruct the Caspian shore gas pipeline with a capacity of 10 billion cubic metres (per year) and build a parallel gas pipeline
Analysis: Russian deal
The deal represents a victory for Russia, which buys Turkmen gas at below-market prices.
The BBC's Natalia Antelava says the agreement is a huge blow to Washington, Brussels and Beijing, who have all been vying for direct access to Turkmenistan's gas.
They have lobbied strongly for a route under the Caspian Sea to Azerbaijan and Turkey, bypassing Russia.
Turkmenistan's massive gas reserves are effectively controlled by Moscow, since it relies on Russian energy giant Gazprom's Soviet-era pipelines for distribution."
Friday, May 11, 2007
Skopje/Moscow /11/05/ 14:21
The New Social-Democratic Party (NSDP) leader Tito Petkovski called on Russia to 'more precisely' express its interests in Macedonia.
Petkovski regrets that throughout the period of transition, Russian companies have demonstrated a weak interest in Macedonia, alluding to Russia's policy on the Balkan and Macedonia.
'Actually, I wish that we have excellent relations with Russia, particularly in economy sphere. In this context, Moscow should voice clear stands over its interests in Macedonia because our country is situated in the central part of the Balkan and it plays an important geo-political role in the region,' Petkovski said an in interview with Russian news agency Itar-Tass.
Petkovski reckons that Russian companies show weak interest in Macedonia's calls for investments as well as in international tenders. He, however, mentioned the positive experience with a few Russian companies operating in Macedonia.
'Many companies in Russia, such as LUKOIL, ITERA and ROMTRADE have already confirmed as serious partners, by giving a good stake in the development of relations between the two countries,' Petkovski said.
He reiterated that NSDP pledges for a balance in Macedonia's relations with all countries,"
Tuesday, 08 May 2007
SKOPJE, MACEDONIA—After an unsuccessful bid to win the 2002 Eurovision Contest, landing her in 19th place, Karolina Goceva is going at it again, this time more confident than ever. Karolina won the Macedonian Eurosong competition with the song 'Mojot Svet,' beating out 20 competitors by a wide margin. The song was written by Grigor Koprov and composed by Ognen Nedelkovski. The competition took place at the Universal Hall in Skopje on February 24, 2007. Karolina is the first singer to represent Macedonia twice at Eurovision. She will compete with singers from around Europe in the semi-final in Helsinki, Finland on May 10, 2007.
The Eurovision Song Contest is an annual competition between active member-countries of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU). Each participating country submits a song to be performed on live television.Viewers, who cannot vote for the song from their own country, vote via telephone to determine the winner of the competition. Each country participates through one of their national EBU-member television stations, who are responsible for selecting a singer and a song to represent the country in the international competition."
Thursday, May 10, 2007
Debar /10/05/ 10:58
Debar City Council will convene today for an extraordinary session to condemn the terrorist activities of three fellow citizens, charged in plot to attack army base in the US.
The local government spokesman Ili Mirzo said the high-ranking representatives of the local government decided Wednesday to convoke a session of the City Council, comprised of representatives of five political parties, Makfax correspondent said.
Debar residents condemned the activities of three ethnic Albanians, who were arrested in the United States and accused of plotting to attack Fort Dix Amy base. The group of would-be terrorists included three brothers Shain, Dritan and Elvir Duka, ethnic Albanians born in Debar's village of Spas. /end/"
home : news & features : local news Thursday, May 10, 2007
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Kosher fetaB'nai B'rith series focuses on Greek Jews
by Eric Fingerhut
|home : news & features : local news||Thursday, May 10, 2007|
|5/9/2007 8:59:00 PM||Email this article • Print this article|
|Kosher fetaB'nai B'rith series focuses on Greek Jews|
by Eric Fingerhut
Oh, I didn't know there were Jews in Greece."
Athens native Nina Kaplanides, 78, has heard the comment frequently since she arrived in the United States in 1950. The Potomac resident usually points out that not only are there Jews in Greece, but they have been there more than 2,000 years ‹ as far back as 586 BCE.
B'nai B'rith International's Center for Jewish Culture is hoping to educate Washington-area residents about that history with a series of programs about Greek Jews and their traditions.
"The Odyssey of the Jews of Greece: A Journey Throughout the Ages" kicked off last month and will continue through June with films, photo essays, cooking demonstrations and other cultural programming.
The project is an example of "cultural diplomacy," said Diana Cohen Altman, director of the B'nai B'rith Center for Jewish Culture and the Klutznick National Jewish Museum.
"The idea is we're creating bridges of understanding through culture, reaching out across boundaries to make connections," she said.
The organization already has connected with the Greek Embassy. Greece's ambassador to the U.S., Alexandros Mallias, said in an interview last week that he was thrilled to be able to cooperate on the "excellent" project.
"It is clear ... [that Greeks and Jews] are connected by history, geography ... philosophy ... since the beginning of recorded history," said Mallias, who was honored by BBI for "advancing Jewish-Greek relations" at a luncheon kicking off the series last month.
Greece and the Jewish community also have a common interest in maintaining "historical memory" and not allowing "anyone to distort our history," Mallias said, noting Holocaust-denial efforts around the world. Greeks, he said, have encountered their own problems in preserving history, battling "leaders who question the existence of Greek Macedonia."
In addition to joining cultures, Altman noted, the program also dovetails with B'nai B'rith's goal of getting Jews more involved in community activities, particularly young adults who find cultural events appealing.
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
It is only a matter of time when some leading politician in the US proclaims that if only the Albanians in Macedonia and Kosovo are allowed to join Albania, then terrorism in the Balkans would be solved. Expect something soon from Congressman Lantos.
Watch for Macedonia to be blamed for the "Fort Dix Terror Plot".
Three Men Charged in US Terror Plot Are Ethnic Albanians
Three of the six men who were arrested and charged with plotting to attack U.S. soldiers at the Fort Dix Army base in New Jersey are ethnic Albanian brothers born in Macedonia.
Relatives of the three brothers interviewed in their hometown of Debar, a remote town on Macedonia's border with Kosovo, expressed anger and disbelief that the three would want to attack the United States. The relatives said they are all thankful to America for its support during the wars in Kosovo and Macedonia. The brothers are Dritan Duka, Shain Duka and Eljvir Duka. All three were illegal immigrants."
3 brothers implicated in Fort Dix plot had roots in fiercely pro-American region of Balkans,
International Herald Tribune, AP May 9th.
Relatives in the ethnic Albanian-populated town of 15,000 said they had not seen the brothers in more than two decades, but expressed disbelief Wednesday that the three would attack the United States.
"We all have been supporters of America. We were always thankful to America for its support during the wars in Kosovo and Macedonia," a cousin, Elez Duka, 29, told The Associated Press.
"These are simple, ordinary people and they've got nothing to do with terrorism. I expect their release and I expect an apology," he said, waving his hands. "I see injustice. These are ridiculous charges."
His indignation captured the mood among Muslims in Kosovo, Macedonia and Albania — places that have repeatedly expressed gratitude to the United States for intervening in the 1998-99 Kosovo war and a 2001 ethnic conflict that pushed Macedonia to the brink of civil war.
UMD Sends Letter to Greek Caucus about H. Res. 356
The United Macedonian Diaspora reacted swiftly to the unjust, insulting, and inaccurate house resolution that was introduced by the co-chairs of the Helenic Caucus Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY) and Congressman Gus Bilirakis (R-FL). Please read our action alert to see how you can provide additional support to our efforts.
If anything, this resolution is hypocritical because the said Interim Agreement was forced upon the Republic of Macedonia in 1995 as a condition to end the Greek Embargo. This temporarry agreement achieved several Greek aims including: (1) a tentative reference term for the Republic of Macedonia at the UN and within certain international bodies, (2) changes to the historic national symbols of the Republic of Macedonia with new ones, and (3) constitutional changes that were unwarranted.
Even after all this humiliation, Macedonia has revealed itself as more than willing to compromise in this ridiculous situation by proposing several resolutions to the “name dispute.” Notwithstanding the Republic of Macedonia’s efforts and the concessions it has already made, Athens continues to incredulously refer to Macedonian “intransigence” on the purported “name issue.”
You can read the full letter to the members of the Congress that participate in this Caucus by clicking HERE.
Looks like Lantos' Albanian pets are biting back!
Ah, but the Jihadists HAVE Taken Note, Mr. Lantos!
Posted by Julia under Republican Riot
At the hearing, titled “The Outlook for the Independence of Kosova” (the Islamic and dhimmi spelling of the province), Rep. Tom Lantos (D-CA) — Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee — said the following:
Just a reminder to the predominantly Muslim-led government[s] in this world that here is yet another example that the United States leads the way for the creation of a predominantly Muslim country in the very heart of Europe. This should be noted by both responsible leaders of Islamic governments, such as Indonesia, and also for jihadists of all color and hue. The United States’ principles are universal, and in this instance, the United States stands foursquare for the creation of an overwhelmingly Muslim country in the very heart of Europe.Clinton holdover Nicholas Burns, State Dept. Under Secretary for Political Affairs, was the special Witness. He reiterated the U.S. position that immediate independence without standards or compromise is the only acceptable solution, because the growing violence is what guides our Kosovo policy:
It’s our view that we have now [to] act resolutely in the coming weeks…we looked at this very carefully with our European friends. And we said, are we better off supporting a solution in the spring of 2007 or delaying a year or two? We became convinced in looking at it, all of us, that the prospects for violence would be greater if we waited. Because 92 to 94 percent of the people who now live in Kosovo are Albanian Muslims. They have been waiting a long, long time…And so we the international community must act.Indeed, an Asia Times commentary this week explained that to Russia (as to Serbia), an independent Muslim Kosovo presents an existential threat. And it is to America’s eternal disgrace that a country like Russia is on the right side of history on this matter while we pigheadedly pursue the futile path of befriending evil. Burns’ appalling response to Watson’s concerns:
…Kosovo is different… and we believe that achieving the independence of Kosovo will not lead others to justify similar treatment from the United Nations or from the United States itself.Because there’s no such thing as setting precedents? Particularly by rewarding violence, as the Kosovo Albanians watched the West do in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict? Further, Burns believes that our actions in Kosovo didn’t embolden the Albanians to promptly move on to terrorize neighboring Macedonia, and Montenegro and parts of Southern Serbia.
Three of Albanians arrested in US were born in Macedonia
The independent news agency Makfax: Skopje, 16:53
Three of the Albanians arrested in USA under suspicions of plotting a terrorist attack were born in Macedonia.
Speaking under condition of anonymity, a source of the Macedonian Interior Ministry confirmed this information to Makfax Agency.
Duka brothers were born in Ohrid, i.e. Debar, and lived in the Debar's nearby village of Spas."
National Albanian American Council Strongly Condemns the Planned Attack on Fort Dix Army Base in New Jersey, (Press Release)
WASHINGTON, May 8 /CNW/ -- The National Albanian American Council (NAAC) issued the following statement. The National Albanian American Council (NAAC) strongly condemns the planned attack on Fort Dix Army Base by a group of people who reportedly plotted to attack the base, and we congratulate the law enforcement authorities for their swift apprehension of the conspirators, thereby preventing a possible tragedy. While details are still being released, it was reported that these individuals, who plotted the attack on Fort Dix Arm Base, included persons with 'radical jihadist views' with national origins from Turkey, Jordan, and Macedonia."
Plot illustrates Balkans' role as Islamist foothold --
The Washington Times: "
U.S. officials said intelligence reports from the Balkans have identified a support structure for several terrorist groups, including al Qaeda, among the Muslim communities in Albania and in the former Yugoslavia, including Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo and Macedonia.
"When it comes to extremists, we're talking about very, very small pockets in Albania, as well as among the ethnic Albanian populations in Kosovo, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia and other parts of the Balkans," said one official with access to intelligence reports.
The official pointed out that the Albanian government has been supportive of U.S. efforts to counter Islamic terrorist activities, including curbing logistics and financial aid, and working to prevent terrorists from receiving training and weapons.
But a Congressional Research Service report produced in 2005 said instability in Albania during the 1990s gave al Qaeda a "foothold" there.
"Poor internal security, lax border controls, and high rates of crime produced an environment conducive to terrorist activity," said the report by CRS specialist Steven Woehrel. "Some foreign Islamic extremists used Albania as a safe haven and gained Albanian citizenship."
Balkan Muslims also have been targets of al Qaeda recruitment efforts because they have an easier time blending in or evading U.S. and European security measures and border controls, which often are geared to identifying Middle Eastern extremists.
The State Department's latest annual report on international terrorism said the Albanian government has taken steps to stop terrorism financing but noted that "government and police forces faced substantial challenges to fully enforce border security and combat organized crime and corruption."
Albanian' vs. 'Yugoslav' - Editorials/Op-Ed -
The Washington Times, America's Newspaper: "
Early in this story, the Albanian connection emerged in some outlets, but "Yugoslav," a term we associate with Slobodan Milosevic or Josip Tito more than Islamist violence, persisted. The connotations of "Albanian" begin with the fact that 70 percent of Albanians are Muslim. Now, combine "Albanian" with the allegation of a thwarted assault-rifle attack on Fort Dix. This suggests a working hypothesis. The hypothesis: An attack by Islamist terrorists may just have been thwarted. It has nothing to do with anti-fascist partisans or Communist apparatchiks.
Our news organizations seem now to be acting upon the desire to avoid fueling that speculation as long as possible. We're not clear why, except for their biases, or perhaps their worry of offending people. Thus they conclude with quotes like this one, which appeared at the end of CBS's dispatch yesterday: " 'If these people did something, then they deserve to be punished to the fullest extent of the law,' said Sohail Mohammed, a lawyer who represented many of the detainees. 'But when the government says 'Islamic militants,' it sends a message to the public that Islam and militancy are synonymous.' "
No, it doesn't, and news organizations should not end stories with such spurious claims. The government can and should say "Islamic militants" if in fact there is credible evidence that the accused are Islamic militants. In this case, federal prosecutors have the recordings of an informant to illustrate it.
The American people are smart enough to figure it out. They need this information when it is available. As long as our news organizations fail to report the facts they know to be true, they are failing to do their job. They should not engage in "perception management."
Tuesday, May 08, 2007
With a headline like this, it can't get any better for the Serbs. It just may convince the US to heed Russia's advice and move slowly with regard to the independence of Kosovo. It has been a confused situation since the FBI press release did not reveal the ethnicity of the plotters. They have been under investigation for the last number of months. One would expect that their home town in "the former Yugoslavia" would have been identified and be investigated. I smell a plot. They could be from Montenegro, Kosovo, Southern Serbia or even Macedonia with Debar being the prime suspect. Did the FBI contact Macedonia to see if the conspiracy extends there. If not, why not?
Six Men Held Over Plot to Attack U.S. Army Base
New York Time May 8, 2007
"Media in Serbia's U.N.-run Kosovo province reported four of the six men were ethnic Albanians, either from Macedonia, Montenegro or Kosovo itself.
The Islamic Community in Kosovo issued a statement saying it was ``shocked'' at news of the plot.
``This case is particularly hard for us, knowing that people of our nation and our religion are involved,'' it said.
The arrests were made on Monday night in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, a Philadelphia suburb where the Duka brothers live.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Joel Schneider ordered the men detained to face charges of plotting to kill military personnel and weapons possession. Each wore a prison jumpsuit and was shackled at the ankles.
Sixteen family members including women wearing headscarves sat in the public benches. Some wept quietly."
Monday, May 07, 2007
Human Rights Watch should produce a list of politicians that enable human rights violations around the world. It does not have to be an exhaustive list of all politicians and all human rights violation ... start with the plight of Macedonians in Greece and Kurds in Turkey. Mike Rann would be top on the list. Next time some pandering politician flies all the way to Greece garner Greek votes at home by spitting on ethnic Macedonian identity, there should be a welcoming committee of Macedonians waiting for him.
Premier of South Australia says Macedonia belongs to Greece
Athens /07/05/ 17:13
Macedonia belongs to Greece, like the Acropolis does, Mike Rann, the Premier of South Australia, said today in Athens.
In the course of his visit to Greece, he met with the Minister of Macedonia & Thrace, Georgios Kalantzis, and the regional prefect Panayiotis Psomiadis.
According to Greek newspaper Eleftherotypia, Rann said that no nation should steel the history and insignia belonging to another nation."
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Saturday, May 05, 2007
May 06, 2007 12:00am
Article from: Sunday Herald Sun
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IT was two brides for two brothers when identical twins Mende and Kire Antoski travelled to their birthplace, Macedonia, last year.
They met cousins Beti Govanovska and Anita Ilioski at a nightspot while they were celebrating their 27th birthday. The brothers immediately fell for the girls.
They proposed three months later and the girls came from Macedonia to wed their grooms in a rare double ceremony. Mende's wife, Beti, never imagined she would have a double wedding with her cousin.
'Anita and I are very close, but I never imagined we would marry twin brothers together,' she said.
The couples married at St Ilija Macedonian Orthodox Church, Footscray, in February, with 200 guests sharing in the special day.
'The wedding was like a dream,' Beti said.
The identical twins have a habit of doing everything together, including dressing alike and driving the same cars.
The newlyweds went to Phillip Island for their honeymoon and all live together in West Sunshine."
Friday, May 04, 2007
Skopje, May 4 (MIA) - US recognises the constitutional name of the Republic of Macedonia. There is no change in the US policy in relation to recognition of the constitutional name. There will be no such changes, the US Ambassador to Macedonia Gillian Milovanovic said addressing Friday's debate on border security in the Republic of Macedonia.
- At the same time it is very important the process in which UN talks are led where Macedonia and Greece are included, mutually acceptable solution to be found. We hope that two countries will make efforts in the UN process to continue and solution to be found, Milovanovic said, commenting the submitted resolution in the US House of Representatives which calls Macedonia to avoid activities which will hinder achievement of the goal, supported by the US and UN for finding mutually acceptable solution in relation to the name issue.
In regard to the Adriatic Group members and the progress for membership in NATO, US Ambassador said that the group should continue to work together which is very important since it shows the capacity for accession in the Alliance.
- Macedonia is becoming the best possible candidate, Milovanovic assessed, explaining that accession in the Alliance is individual and the question is not whether one c"
The Associated Press
Article Launched: 05/04/2007 12:50:29 PM PDT
LONDON- Elena Becatoros, an editor in London and a former reporter in the Balkans for The Associated Press, has been named AP's chief of southeastern European news in Athens.
Her duties will include directing news coverage in Greece, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Macedonia and Albania, said Dan Perry, the AP's regional editor for Europe and Africa, who announced the appointment Thursday. She will be the successor of Patrick Quinn, who recently was named AP's assistant chief of Middle East news in Cairo.
Becatoros, 34, joined the AP in 1997 in Athens. She covered the Balkans, including the conflict in Albania and the wars in Kosovo and Macedonia, for five years before transferring to the International Desk in New York in 2002.
'I am excited and look forward to leading our strong team in coverage of a fascinating, changing and often challenging region,' she said of her appointment.
Becatoros moved to London in 2004, helping to establish a European-African regional editing hub. Reporting assignments in recent years have included the war in Iraq, international summits, the U.N. General Assembly and the 2004 Olympic Games."
by Gordon N. Bardos
EMAIL ARTICLE | PRINTER FRIENDLY
Permanent representatives from the United Nations Security Council have just returned from a fact finding mission to the Balkans and will soon begin debating whether or not to endorse granting Kosovo independence. There are legitimate arguments both in favor of granting Kosovo independence and against. But an argument currently making the rounds in Washington—that the United States should recognize Kosovo’s independence even without Security Council approval—is almost certainly wrong.
In the United States, senators Lieberman (D-CT), Biden (D-DE), McCain (R-AZ) and Smith (R-OR) have introduced a resolution to the Senate calling for a unilateral U.S. recognition of Kosovo’s independence. Yet an ad hoc process which does not enjoy clear international legitimacy, with some countries recognizing Kosovo’s independence and others opting not to, will significantly complicate an already messy diplomatic situation in the Balkans. The International Crisis Group, meanwhile, is arguing that a quick move towards independence is needed to prevent frustrated extremists in Kosovo from exporting violence to other parts of the Balkans. But granting Kosovo independence outright could just as easily whet the appetites of militants who have already engaged in violence in Macedonia"
Thursday, May 03, 2007
Ahtisaari's plan is facing failure by Frankfurter Rundschau':
Frankfurt /03/05/ 18:09
Martti Ahtisaari's plan on the future status of Kosovo is likely to fall through, writes the German daily Frankfurter Rundschau.
The paper says that such an outcome is lurking after completion of the UN Mission's visit to Belgrade and Pristina.
'UN delegation came back to New York filled with skepticism', the paper says, adding that unofficial assessments suggest that the plan is unlikely to win the necessary 9 out of 15 votes at the Security Council in order to pass.
According to the newspaper, only USA, Great Britain, France, Belgium and Italy have voiced unambiguous readiness to back the plan. Peru, Panama and Qatar are floating, while South Africa, Congo, Ghana, Indonesia and China are against in principle, whereas Slovakia and Russia are strongly opposing the adoption of the document.
Frankfurter Rundschau underlines that after the visit to Belgrade and Pristina, the South African Ambassador in UN said that the situation on the ground was drastically different to the one described in the UNMIK's reports."
Macedonian_News_Service : Message: Daily Bulletin:
Sharm el-Sheikh, May 3 (MIA) - Macedonian FM Antonio Milososki on Thursday will lead Macedonian delegation in Sharm el-Sheikh in Egypt where he is to participate at the meeting on the International Compact for Iraq which represents initiative of the Iraqi government for new partnership with the international community.
FM Milososki will deliver a short address before the participants of the meeting. The UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon will also deliver an address and several countries among which the US, Great Britain, Germany, Italy, Denmark, Poland, Greece, Bulgaria, Albania, Armenia, South Korea, Bahrain and Egypt confirmed the participation at ministerial level.
The basic goal of the International Compact for Iraq is realisation of the aspirations of the Iraqi people in establishing the united, federal democratic state, active member of regional and international organisations with prosperous economy in which private sector will dominate, Macedonian Foreign Ministry press release reads.
Wednesday, May 02, 2007
NEIL REYNOLDS, Globe and Mail, May 2, 2007
"OTTAWA — In one of its first acts last year, the newly elected government of, Macedonia (population: two million) legislated radical tax reforms. On Jan. 1, 2007, the country introduced a flat-rate tax of 12 per cent on both personal and corporate income, matching the rate introduced two years ago by Georgia (population: 5.6 million). On Jan. 1, 2008, Macedonia will cut its rate to 10 per cent - and achieve one of the lowest tax rates in the world.
Macedonia's tax revenues will almost certainly rise. The country's new, young (age: 36 years) free-market Prime Minister, Nikola Gruevski, cites the phenomenon of voluntary compliance that accompanies flat-tax regimes. 'This reform will decrease tax evasion,' he says, 'and encourage people to meet their obligations to the state.' As Russia (population: 144 million) vividly demonstrated when it adopted a flat tax (replacing a 40-per-cent rate on personal income with a 13-per-cent rate) in 2000, low rates are persuasive tax collectors. Russia's revenues rose 25 per cent in the first year, 25 per cent in the second year, 15 per cent in the third year. People who violently resist getting scalped will submit voluntarily for a trim.
Tuesday, May 01, 2007
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 4/30/2007
Macedonia was most heavily damaged during Operation Allied Force. But one would do well to separate the irreversible damages from the reversible ones. The former have a corrosive, pernicious effect - the latter, though harmful and painful, can be remedied through added aid and investment and the adoption of the right frame of mind. The trade sector in Macedonia suffered c. 50 million US dollars in damages in the past three months.