Zaev optimistic; according to Deskoska – anything is possible in the SPO talks

It’s possible the Government and the opposition agree on the Law on Public Prosecution before the European Commission releases its report on May 29, according to North Macedonia’s Prime Minister Zoran Zaev and Justice Minister Renata Deskoska.

After a debate Tuesday on the National Strategy for the Development of the Concept of One Society for All and Interculturalism, PM Zaev told journalists he was optimistic about finding a solution for the Special Prosecutor’s Office status within the proposed Law on the Public Prosecution.

“I think we can round off this process ahead of the report on May 29 so both negotiating sides can announce an agreement was reached,” PM Zaev said.

He added the negotiations, despite some differences, were leading to a successful outcome.

“This is important. The report will be positive, but […] let’s not leave any stain or give any reason to let anyone procrastinate anything,” said the prime minister.

Justice Minister Deskoska said although no new meetings had been scheduled yet, many things in our country were decided at the last moment, so anything was possible.

According to Minister Deskoska, all political parties were becoming more aware that no pardons would be granted.

“We insist that all principles of the rule of law be upheld,” Deskoska said, “which means leaving no room for hidden amnesty.”

“This is the principle we cannot give up because only a law based on quality solutions in line with EU standards will be evaluated positively,” Deskoska added.

Deskoska said the talks focused on finding solutions based on existing laws and practice.

“We already have trials using wiretapped or recorded materials unrelated to the SPO, which is in line with other laws. This is what’s being debated,” Deskoska said, adding that judges would eventually be those who decide on investigations, evidence, and related issues following the Law on Criminal Procedure.

PM Zaev said the new draft law that incorporates the SPO’s status was also discussed with Zijadin Sela and Bilal Kasami, leaders of the Albanian party opposition bloc.

“Maybe they wanted to send a message to the court system related to certain requests for justice,” Zaev said.