We are back from Skopje. In more than one week there, we’ve managed to meet a lot of people, taste local cevapi, write tons of stories, feel melancholic, party till morning and even find a new member for our Cevapi Club!
Everything started with 6PM antigovernment protests. Every evening, Albanians and Macedonians were walking together in Skopje’s city-center, peacefully asking for the ostavka (demission) of PM Nikola Gruevski.
Slowly during the week, protests became a daily rendez-vous and a sense of routine and repetitiveness started to spread in the air. But, hopefully, a live concert in a bar in the Old Town was there to bring back some good electric vibe.
During the week, we wrote about new Skopje’s kitsch…
…and the nonexistence of inter-ethnic conflicts in Macedonia after Kumanovo’s mysterious facts. (Not easy to convince Italian media that protests in the Balkans don’t necessarily end up with an inter-ethnic bloody war).
Finally, it was Sunday and a big demonstration was organized in front of the government building.
There were thousands of people in the streets:
On the balconies:
And near the stage:
All of them were there to send the same clear message:
During the evening, some protesters settled up a small camp with tens of colorful tents.
We were there with some friends, enjoying Skopje’s warm night and, later, interviewing the opposition’s leader Zoran Zaev.
Today, Macedonia’s political crisis is not over. Prime minister Nikola Gruevski is still in power, and the opposition leader Zoran Zaev still demands a transitional government and new elections. And in Skopje’s city center, protesters are still camping (either to support Zaev, either to support Gruevski).
But Cevapi Club got bigger in the meanwhile and you will soon know more about this!