Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 08:34:17 -0600 (CST)
From: Panayote Elias Dimitras <email@example.com>
Subject: Macedonia: Disturbing Inter-Ethnic Violence
Skopje, 7 March, 1999.—The widespread opinion about the relaxation of interethnic relations in the Republic of Macedonia, that was also accepted by some important international circles, could be denied easily by the recent events and to be reduced to a political promotion: this has not been confirmed in everyday life, rather it has been denied. The small, often bloody wars between the Albanian and Macedonian pupils, that have occurred recently in a sequential series threatening to go out of control and become a prevailing feature of our everyday life, represent an omen that Macedonia can anticipate a danger with unpredictable and irreparable consequences.
The interethnic conflict now is manifested not by the declared will and intention of the political factors that was the usual matrix in the past, rather it has the potential of appearance of interethnic intolerance in the foundations of the everyday relations. That manifestation in Skopje, as well as in other places, warns and appeals to both the coalition partners and to other political parties, to the complete civil structure and to other competent bodies, especially the parents and the institutions to show the highest level of alertness and responsibility and to act quickly and efficiently for establishing the required interethnic trust. Given the situation especially with regard to the Kosovo threatening complexity and the conflict by which it menaces the region, there is a need that preventive action becomes a high priority task for everyone of us.
The Helsinki Committee for Human Rights is committed to both greater transparency in providing information about the possible initiators and instigators of these conflictive situations and to urgent undertaking of preventive educational and other activities that shall involve, above all, both the educational institutions on all levels, and also the parents.