The law regarding the use of the languages of ethnic communities in Northern Macedonia will be revised based on the assessment made by the Venice Commission, reports Prime Minister Zoran Zaev.
The Venice Commission, in fact, yesterday invited the authorities of Northern Macedonia to re-examine the law on official languages to annul the provisions concerning bilingualism in judicial proceedings.
This legislation, adopted by the Zaev government, it has been much criticized by nationalist groups in the country as it would formalize bilingualism by effectively combining Albanian with Macedonian. However, Zaev himself stated today that the law will be revised to allow the right to use the mother tongue.
"During the discussion of the law in parliament and also after its approval, we said that we would have waited for the evaluation of the Venice Commission. So now we will respect their assessment. The Ministry of Justice will prepare the changes and we will bring them to parliament for approval."- said Zaev.
The opposition party VMRO-DPMNE, at first against the approval of the law, asked that the position of the Venice Commission be respected, which "Confirmed the observations and criticisms that the citizens and VMRO-DPMNE had raised at the time of the implementation of the law".
"The position of the Venice Commission must be respected, especially since we are a country that aspires to membership in the European Union. ”- reads the reaction statement of VMRO-DPMNE.
The linguistic question
The linguistic question has always been an extremely delicate element in Macedonia, where in the 2001 the Macedonian and Albanian ethnic components gave rise to a brief but bloody battle, closed thanks to international intervention and the signing of the Ohrid Accords.
Before the implementation of the new law last year, the possibility of using Albanian as an official language was limited to municipalities in which the Albanian minority represents at least the 20% of residents.