Uncertain experiment

by Stavros Ligeros

(“Kathimerini”, 28 November, 2001)

The yes vote by the Parliament of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) to the Ochrid peace pact and the new status of relations between the Slav-Macedonian majority and the ethnic Albanian minority will be more fragile than the pact's architects hoped. The ethnic Albanian National Liberation Army's rebellion against the Slav-Macedonian State was nothing but another link in the chain of the Yugoslav drama...

The crisis in former Yugoslavia proved that American ideas promoting the establishment of multiethnic states in non-ethnically integrated areas are wholly without foundation. It demonstrated that the imposition of this model produces instability while the creation of ethnically homogeneous states is a factor for long-term stability. Things would be very different if the international community had from the very beginning sought diplomatic solutions which would have included territorial arrangements and population exchanges.

The exchange of populations is, of course, a barbaric solution, but from the first moment it was obvious that the only alternative would be that of bloody ethnic cleansing. This was proved in Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo. The experiment which is currently under way in FYROM is trying to prove the contrary, but it is too early to tell.


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