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SDSM marks 'Black Monday' anniversary with cardboard memorial outside parliament.

By raising a cardboard memorial with the inscription "Parliamentary Democracy 8 January 1991-24 December 2012" outside Parliament Wednesday, the opposition marked the second anniversary of the "Black Monday".

On 24 December two years ago, opposition MPs and journalists were forced out of the parliamentary hall during a session at which the central budget was being voted on.

"Two years of the day the parliamentary democracy in Macedonia died, standing here next to this Black Monday memorial, we wish to say that we are going to put a stop to the government's intention of completely destroying freedom of speech, democracy, and freedom of choice," SDSM leader Zoran Zaev said.

On 24 December 2012, the situation in parliament grew tense when SDSM submitted over a thousand amendments in a bid to prevent the budget from being voted through. Realizing they would not be able to pass the budget by end of the year, Speaker Veljanoski requested of the security to remove those "obstructing the process".

There followed protests led by SDSM and their coalition outside Parliament and in the streets of Skopje. However, those that protested two years ago were not invited by their party to attend Wednesday's commemoration. Some of them told Dnevnik they have again be let down by leader Zaev.

Right after taking office as leader of the largest opposition party, Zaev distanced those members from the party and removed them from the candidate lists before the general poll earlier this year. They have since taken almost no part in SDSM's work, either at the level of local organizations or top party boards.

The commission responsible to shed light on the 24 December incident passed conclusions that the two parties interpreted in utterly conflicting ways and that have never been acted upon.

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Title Annotation:MIC NEWS
Publication:INFOMAC Daily News Service
Date:Dec 25, 2014
Words:293
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