Macedonia

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Overview
<p>&nbsp;</p> <div>Once a part of Yugoslavia, Macedonia has enjoyed independence for less than two decades. Like other Balkan countries, Macedonia has struggled with ethnic-based tensions, although not to the degree suffered by other former Yugoslav republics, such Bosnia-Herzegovina. Macedonia&rsquo;s situation has revolved around ethnic Albanians living in the country who have claimed discrimination on the part of Macedonian officials.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Although its leaders have laid claim to the name &ldquo;Macedonia,&rdquo; the country had to accept admission into the United Nations as the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM). This was due to opposition from Macedonia&rsquo;s southern neighbor, Greece, which has protested Macedonia&rsquo;s right to the name. &ldquo;Macedonia&rdquo; is also the name of a large northern province of Greece, and to Greek officials, the use of the name implied Macedonia&rsquo;s interest in territorial expansion into the Greek province. The issue has proven to be a huge obstacle for Macedonia&rsquo;s entrance into NATO. The United States has endorsed Macedonia&rsquo;s entry into the alliance, and in 2004, the Bush administration officially recognized the name &ldquo;Macedonia&rdquo; instead of the earlier FYROM designation. But US support has not been enough for Macedonia to gain entry into NATO, and in November 2008, Macedonian officials filed suit with the International Court of Justice over Greece&rsquo;s continued actions over the name/NATO controversy.</div>
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Basic Information
<p>&nbsp;</p> <div><b>Lay of the Land</b>: Situated in the southern region of the Balkan Peninsula, Macedonia is landlocked and mountainous. It is bordered by Greece to the south, Albania to the west, Kosovo and Serbia to the north and Bulgaria to the east.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Population</b>: 2.1 million</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Religions</b>: Macedonian Orthodox 64.7%, Muslim 33.3%, other&nbsp;Christian 0.4%, other 1.6%.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Ethnic Groups</b>: Macedonian 64.2%, Albanian 25.2%, Turkish 3.9%, Roma 2.7%, Serb1.8%, other 2.2%.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Languages</b>: Macedonian (official) 69.3%, Albanian 30.0%, Turkish 10%, Balkan Romani 6.0%, Romanian (Macedo, Megleno) 0.5%, Balkan Gagauz Turkish 0.2%, Serbian, Adyghe.</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <p>&nbsp;</p>
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History
<div><font size="3" class="Apple-style-span"><span class="Apple-style-span" style="font-size: 13px;"> <div> <div>The ancient kingdom of Macedonia was defeated by Rome and became a Roman province in 148 BC. After the Roman Empire fell, Macedonia was ruled by the Byzantine Empire and then the Ottoman Empire. The Ottoman Turks dominated Macedonia for the next five centuries until 1913. During the 19th and 20th centuries, there was constant struggle by the Balkan powers to possess Macedonia for its economic wealth and its strategic military location. The&nbsp;<a href="http://modern-macedonian-history.blogspot.com/2008/09/macedonia-and-preliminary-treaty-of-san.html">Treaty of San Stefano</a>&nbsp;in 1878, which ended the Russo-Turkish War, gave the largest part of Macedonia to Bulgaria. Bulgaria lost much of its Macedonian territory when it was defeated by the Greeks and Serbs in the Second Balkan War of 1913. Most of Macedonia went to Serbia and the remainder was divided between Greece and Bulgaria.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 1918, Serbia, which included much of Macedonia, joined in union with Croatia, Slovenia, and Montenegro, an entity that became Yugoslavia in 1929. During World War II, Bulgaria joined the Axis powers and occupied parts of Yugoslavia, including Macedonia. During the occupation of their country, Macedonian resistance fighters fought a guerrilla war against the invading troops. The Yugoslavian federation was reestablished after the defeat of Germany in 1945, and in 1946 the government removed the Vardar territory of Macedonia from Serbian control and made it an autonomous Yugoslavian republic. Later, when Yugoslav President Josip Broz Tito recognized the Macedonian people as a separate nation, Macedonia&rsquo;s distinct culture and language were able to flourish.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>On Sept. 8, 1991, Macedonia declared its independence from Yugoslavia and asked for recognition from the European Union nations. It became a member of the UN in 1993 under the provisional name of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) because Greece protested Macedonia&rsquo;s right to the name, which is also the name of a large northern province of Greece. To Greece, the use of the name implied Macedonia&rsquo;s interest in territorial expansion into the Greek province. As part of the dispute, Greece subsequently imposed two trade embargoes against Macedonia.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Tensions between ethnic Albanians and Macedonians arose during the Kosovo crisis, during which more than 140,000 refugees streamed into Macedonia. Most of the refugees returned to Kosovo in 2000. But for those ethnic Albanians already living in Macedonia, frustrations surfaced over their minority status and participation in the government. Tensions erupted into open hostilities in Macedonia in February 2001, when a group of ethnic Albanians near the Kosovo border carried out armed provocations that soon escalated into an insurgency.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Claiming to fight for greater civil rights for ethnic Albanians in Macedonia, the group seized territory and launched attacks against government forces. Many observers ascribed other motives to the so-called National Liberation Army (NLA), including the assertion of political control over affected areas. The insurgency spread through northern and western Macedonia during the first half of 2001. Under international mediation, a ceasefire was brokered in July 2001, and the government coalition was expanded in July 2001 to form a grand coalition which included the major opposition parties.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In September 2002, elections resulted in the formation of a center-left coalition that ousted the governing coalition, which had been embroiled in the previous year&rsquo;s guerrilla insurgency. Branko Crvenkovski of the Together for Macedonia coalition became the new prime minister. In February 2004, President Boris Trajkovski was killed in a plane crash. Prime Minister Crvenkovski was then elected president. Since then three prime ministers have served under Crvenkovski.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In August 2004, parliament approved legislation redrawing internal borders and giving ethnic Albanians more local autonomy.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>On June 1, 2008, one person died and nine people were wounded when violence erupted between two ethnic Albanian groups, the Democratic Union for Integration and the Democratic Party of Albanians, during parliamentary elections. At least 17 polling stations suspended voting due to intimidation, violence, and missing ballot boxes and voting materials. The election interruption further impeded Macedonia&rsquo;s chance of becoming a member of the European Union.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski, of the coalition For a Better Macedonia party, won parliamentary elections on June 1, 2008, with 48% of the vote. The Democratic Union for Integration and the Democratic Party of Albanians took 11% and 10% of the vote, respectively.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.historyofmacedonia.org/">History of Macedonia.org</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.macedonia.com/english/history/">History of Macedonia (Macedonia.com)</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.history-of-macedonia.com/">History-of-macedonia.com</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.ancientmacedonia.com/">Ancient Macedonia.com</a></div> <div><a href="http://modern-macedonian-history.blogspot.com/">Modern Macedonian History Blogspot.com</a></div> <div>&nbsp;</div> </div> </span></font></div>
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Macedonia's Newspapers
<p>&nbsp;</p> <div><a href="http://www.onlinenewspapers.com/macedoni.htm">Macedonia's Newspapers</a></div>
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History of U.S. Relations with Macedonia
<p>The first Macedonian to reach America may have been Dragan of Ohrid. Numerous legends surround this colorful figure who probably sailed with Columbus to America and may have returned to the New World with his own expedition to the marshy swamplands of modern-day Venezuela, which Dragan named &ldquo;Venezia&rdquo; for its similarities to the lagoon-laced Italian city.&nbsp;</p> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div>In the 1860s, Protestant missionaries to the Balkans stirred up interest in America and sent a number of Macedonians to universities in the US. Widespread immigration didn&rsquo;t begin until the turn of the 20th century; 50,000 Macedonian Bulgarians arrived between 1903-1906, and a few thousand more continued to come until the advent of World War I. Many Macedonians returned home after the conclusion of the war, leaving only 20,000 residing in the US.&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The Immigration Act of 1924 halted direct immigration, although many continued to come via Canada. By the conclusion of World War II, about 50,000 Macedonians resided in the US.&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>With the formation of the Yugoslav Federation (which supported Macedonian autonomy), many Macedonians elected to remain at home, and only 2,000 arrived between 1945 and 1960. The liberalization of immigration policy in the 1960s and 1970s resulted in 40,000 Macedonians emigrating to Canada, the United States and Australia. An additional 70,000 Macedonians living in Greece emigrated in the wake of World War II, when Slavs were expelled from the region.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Documentation of Macedonian immigrants has always been imprecise because many people coming from within the geographical boundaries of Macedonia considered themselves ethnically Bulgarian, Turkish, Serbian, Albanian, or Greek, and they were listed as such on immigration records. Thus the current census figures likely under-represent the Macedonian population in the US.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Because most Macedonians came to the US in search of economic opportunity, they settled in industrial centers, primarily in the Midwest. The states with the largest Macedonian populations are Michigan (7,801), New York (4,740), Ohio (4,468), Indiana (4,254), and New Jersey (3,772).</div>
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Current U.S. Relations with Macedonia
<p>The United States formally recognized Macedonia on February 8, 1994, and the two countries established full diplomatic relations on September 13, 1995. The US Liaison Office was upgraded to an embassy in February 1996, and the first American ambassador to Skopje arrived in July 1996. In deference to its ally, Greece, the US officially recognized Macedonia as the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. But that changed on November 4, 2004 when the Bush administration gave recognition to &ldquo;Macedonia&rdquo; only, much to the consternation of officials in Athens.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The United States condemned those behind the 2001 insurgency in Macedonia and reinforced its support for the government. Macedonia continues to play a key role as the <a href="http://www.nato.int/KFOR/">Kosovo Force</a>&rsquo;s (KFOR) rear area, hosting the logistical supply line for KFOR troops in Kosovo. As part of these efforts, Macedonia hosts NATO troops, including US forces, in support of NATO operations in Kosovo and to assist Macedonia&rsquo;s efforts to reform its military to meet NATO standards. Close US-Macedonian bilateral defense cooperation continues. Macedonia also contributes troops to international coalition operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Bilateral assistance budgeted to Macedonia under the Support for East European Democracy (SEED) Act totaled more than $440 million from 1990 to 2008. Macedonia received approximately $28 million in SEED Act assistance in 2007 and is receiving approximately $22 million in 2008.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>US Agency for International Development (USAID) is targeting capacity building for local government officials, who will have more authority and responsibility devolved from the central government, as well as providing grants to fund small-scale infrastructure projects. A priority of US assistance is to facilitate Macedonia&rsquo;s transition to a market economy and increase employment and growth levels.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>USAID economic assistance is focused on two levels. At the macro-level, programs target improvements in the business-enabling environment by helping to bring legislative and regulatory frameworks in line with EU standards and improving the transparency and efficiency of government services through technology. At the micro-level, assistance is given to firms and agribusinesses to increase their competitiveness and productivity, coupled with initiatives to attract foreign investment and stimulate local investment. Training programs that provide career-enhancing education to prepare youth and adults for growth sectors are also supported. A resident US Department of the Treasury advisor, who will be phased out in 2008, has assisted the Ministry of Finance in improving strategy, planning and execution, and public expenditure management.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>USAID is also focused on helping the Macedonian government and civil society combat corruption. A US Department of Justice Resident Legal Advisor and a Senior Law Enforcement Advisor are focusing on strengthening the independence of the judiciary, efficacy of public prosecution, reform of criminal codes, increasing police capacity, and combating trafficking in persons and organized crime.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>USAID programs also are seeking to improve education in Macedonia. Targets include improving teaching techniques, modernizing vocational education, introducing information and communication technology (ICT) as a learning tool in the classroom and providing broadband Internet service throughout the country using primary and secondary schools as a platform. Other programs address interethnic cooperation, assistance to the Roma minority, performance improvement of key institutions, and corruption.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>On May 7, 2008, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Foreign Minister Antonio Milososki signed a joint <a href="http://www.state.gov/p/eur/rls/or/104441.htm">Declaration of Strategic Partnership and Cooperation</a>.</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div>A total of 38,051 people identified themselves as being of Macedonian ancestry in the 2000 US census.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 2006, 8,275 Americans visited Macedonia. The number of tourists has increased gradually since 2002, when 6,997 Americans journeyed to Macedonia.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>A total of 3,181 Macedonians visited the US in 2006. In the last five years, tourism peaked in 2002 (3,404 visitors), and reached a low in 2004 (2,633 visitors).</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.iht.com/articles/2004/11/05/mace_ed3__0.php">U.S. grants Macedonia the name recognition it wants</a> (by Nicholas Wood, International Herald Tribune)</div>
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Where Does the Money Flow
<p>US imports from Macedonia totaled $72.7 million in 2007, led by steelmaking and ferroalloying materials (unmanufactured) at $37.1 million (after registering $0 in the previous years). Other imports on the rise include nickel, up from $0 to $6.8 million, tobacco, and waxes and nonfood oils, up from $7.9 million to $10.4 million.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Recently, the US has begun to dramatically cutback on its import of apparel and household goods (cotton), down from $18.8 million to $4.4 million, and (wool), dropping from $15.2 million to $1.1 million.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The most significant exports from the US to Macedonia are pharmaceutical preparations, rising from $79,000 to $9 million, and meat and poultry, which has steadily averaged $6 million a year from 2003 to 2007.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Overall, the US is running a trade deficit with Macedonia ($72.7 million in imports vs. $33.5 million in exports in 2007).</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The US sold $2.1 million in defense articles and services to Macedonia in 2007.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The US gave $33.9 million in aid to Macedonia in 2007. The budget allotted the most funds to Education ($7.5 million), Private Sector Competitiveness ($6.6 million), Stabilization Operations and Security Sector Reform ($5.4 million), and Good Governance ($3.3 million).&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In the 2008 budget estimate, funding decreased to $26.1 million, and the 2009 budget request will further reduce aid down to $23.8 million. The 2009 budget will allocate the most funds to Private Sector Competitiveness ($6 million), Stabilization Operations and Security Sector Reform ($5.2 million), and Rule of Law of Human Rights ($2.8 million).</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/product/enduse/imports/c4794.html">Imports from Macedonia</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/product/enduse/exports/c4794.html">Exports to Macedonia</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.state.gov/t/pm/64817.htm">Macedonia: Security Assistance</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/101368.pdf">Congressional Budget for Foreign Operations (pages 478-481)</a> (PDF)</div>
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Controversies
<p><b>Macedonia Takes Greece to Court over Name, NATO Dispute</b></p> <div>The United States&rsquo; support for Macedonia&rsquo;s entry into the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) hasn&rsquo;t been enough to get the small Balkan nation into the military alliance. In the spring of 2008, Greece blocked Macedonia&rsquo;s entry into NATO because it insisted Macedonia change its name first. The controversy dates back to Macedonia&rsquo;s declaration of independence in 1991, when Greece insisted the newly independent country be admitted to the UN as the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM). Greece has maintained that the name &ldquo;Macedonia&rdquo; belongs only to its large northern province which borders on the country of Macedonia, and Greek officials have insisted that the country of Macedonia harbors designs on the Greek territory of Macedonia.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>During a NATO summit in April, the US called for Greece and Macedonia to settle the issue so that Macedonia could join the alliance. But the two sides were unable to come to an agreement, and NATO&rsquo;s rules require unanimous consent of all members before a new country can be admitted.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In November 2008 Macedonia filed a complaint with the International Court of Justice over Greece&rsquo;s stonewalling of Macedonia&rsquo;s entry into NATO, claiming Greece had violated a 1995 agreement between the two countries.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The vast majority of people in Macedonia are against changing their country&rsquo;s name to become a member of NATO. According to a poll by the Center for Research and Policy Making, 82% of respondents rejected Greece&rsquo;s condition to support Macedonia&rsquo;s accession to NATO.</div> <div><a href="http://www.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/europe/11/18/macedonia.dispute/index.html">Name dispute lands Greece, Macedonia in court</a> (by Anthee Carassava, CNN)</div> <div><a href="http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,544167,00.html">Which Macedonia Was Alexander the Great From?</a> (Der Spiegel)</div> <div><a href="http://www.worldpoliticsreview.com/article.aspx?id=1854">What's in a Name? For Greece and Macedonia, Perhaps the Future of NATO</a> (by Adam Herbert, World Politics Review)</div> <div><a href="http://www.angus-reid.com/polls/view/30120">Macedonians Won&rsquo;t Give Up Name for NATO</a> (Angus Reid Global Monitor)</div>
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Human Rights
<p>The 2007 State Department report on human rights in Macedonia found that police abuse of suspects continued to be a problem, and there were allegations of police harassment of ethnic minorities. Also, corruption in the interior and justice ministries, and political pressure exerted on them, the courts, and the public prosecutor&rsquo;s office, impeded the investigation and prosecution of some allegations of human rights abuse. In addition, societal discrimination against ethnic minorities, particularly Roma, continued to be a problem.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Prison conditions barely met international standards. Significant problems noted by international observers were poor hygienic conditions and medical care, inadequate state funding, and overcrowding.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>International observers and local NGOs cited corruption, lack of transparency, and political pressure within the Ministry of the Interior as hindering efforts to fight crime, particularly organized crime.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>There were reports that police continued to call suspects and witnesses to police stations for &ldquo;informative talks&rdquo; without informing them of their rights. Most allegations of this practice involved accusations that police targeted the individuals for political reasons. The individuals were not arrested or held for extended periods of time.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The State Department characterized the judiciary as &ldquo;weak, inefficient, and occasionally appeared to be influenced by political pressure, intimidation, and corruption.&rdquo; Some judicial officials accused the government of using its budgetary authority and modest allocations to the court system as instruments to exert control over the judiciary.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Media institutions and reporting were divided along ethnic and political lines, with the most striking divisions visible in reporting on controversial political issues. There were allegations of threats against media outlets that did not report favorably on the government, as well as more subtle government pressures. Macedonian Radio and Television, which generally favored the government's views on political issues, was the country&rsquo;s sole public broadcaster.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>According to the World Bank&rsquo;s Worldwide Governance Indicators, government corruption was a serious problem. Instances of corruption in the police and judicial systems were of particular concern.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>There were reports of police violence against Roma and Albanians, including beatings during arrest and while in detention. The most widely noted incident involved the &ldquo;Mountain Storm&rdquo; police operation in the village of Brodec, which involved a number of arrests of suspected gang members.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Ethnic Albanians continued to complain of official discrimination. They were concerned about the slow progress in reaching what they considered to be equitable representation in government ministries, while ethnic Macedonians often claimed that they were targeted for downsizing regardless of job performance. Some ethnic Albanians claimed they were effectively disenfranchised by discrimination in citizenship decisions.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Ethnic Turks also complained of governmental, societal, and cultural discrimination. Their main concerns were slow progress in achieving equitable representation in government institutions, the absence of Turkish majority municipalities in the 2004 municipal redistricting, and the inadequacy of Turkish-language education and media.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Roma complained of widespread societal discrimination. NGOs and international experts reported that Roma were often denied job opportunities, access to public welfare funds, and entrance to establishments such as restaurants and cafes.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2007/100571.htm">U.S. State Department</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.amnesty.org/en/region/europeandcentralasia/balkans/macedonia">Amnesty International</a></div>
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Debate
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Past Ambassadors
<p>Christopher R. Hill<br /> Appointment: Jul 2, 1996<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 29, 1996<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 2, 1999</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>M. Michael Einik<br /> Appointment: Jul 7, 1999<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 7, 1999<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 4, 2001</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Lawrence E. Butler<br /> Appointment: Apr 1, 2002<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Apr 22, 2002<br /> Termination of Mission: Mar 26, 2005</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Gillian A. Milovanvic<br /> Appointment: Aug 2, 2005<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 6, 2005<br /> Termination of Mission: 2008</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ho/po/com/10938.htm">Former U.S. Ambassadors to Macedonia</a></div>
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Macedonia's Ambassador to the U.S.
ambassador-image Jolevski, Zoran

 

Zoran Jolevski has served as Macedonia’s Ambassador to the United States since March 2007. Jolevski received his Bachelor of Economics , his Master of Science in Law and his PhD in International Economy from the University of Sts. Cyril and Methodius in Skopje, Macedonia. He speaks English, Serbo-Croatian, Bulgarian, and some French.
 
From January 1983 to January 1988, Jolevski worked as a freelance tour director. From January 1988 to October 1994, he served in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, first as responsible officer for preparing all necessary documents for observer status of Macedonia in GATT, as well as desk officer for the UK and Germany (1988-1992) and then as secretary to the Coordination Group on Ex-Yugoslavia Succession Issues (1992-1994).
 
From 1994 to 1998, Jolevski served as first secretary for the Permanent Mission of Macedonia to the World Trade Organization and the United Nations Office at Geneva.
 
From September 1998 to December 1999, Jolevski worked in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, first as Deputy National Coordinator on Humanitarian Issues for the Kosovo refugee crises and then on WTO accession and other international trade and financial affairs. He was an assistant to Macedonian President Boris Trajkovski.
 
From January 2000 to May 2004, he served as chief of staff of the cabinet of the President of Macedonia and as Chief Adviser to the Minister of Economy on WTO accession. In May 2003, he taught international economic relations and foreign trade at European University.
 
From 2004 to 2006, he served as chief of party “WTO Compliance Activity” and then “Macedonian Business Environment Activity” for two USAID funded projects involving Booz Allen and Hamilton.
 

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Macedonia's Embassy Web Site in the U.S.
<p><a href="http://www.macedonianembassy.org/">Macedonia&rsquo;s Embassy in the U.S.</a></p>
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U.S. Ambassador to Macedonia

Wohlers, Paul
ambassador-image

Paul D. Wohlers, a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, was confirmed as U.S. ambassador to the Balkan nation of Macedonia on August 2, 2011. Wohlers has previous experience in Macedonia. 

 
Born circa 1952, Wohlers graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1974 with a B.S. in International Affairs and served as a Naval Flight Officer, flying in the E-2C Hawkeye with VAW-121, attached to the USS Eisenhower. He earned a J.D. from the University of Washington School of Law in 1982. 
 
Wohlers’s first foreign posting was to the U.S. embassy in Bucharest, Romania, where he served from 1985 to 1987. Returning stateside, Wohlers worked on arms control issues in the State Department Bureau of Political-Military Affairs from 1987 to 1990, and returned to Eastern Europe to work in the embassy at Moscow, Russia, from 1991 to 1993. 
 
Switching gears from Europe to Asia, Wohlers served as Desk Officer for Bangladesh in the Bureau of South Asian Affairs from 1993 to 1994, and served on the Executive Secretariat Staff from 1994 to 1996. He was rewarded with an assignment to the embassy in Nicosia, Cyprus, from 1997 to 2000, returning to Washington, DC, to serve as a Senior Watch Officer in the State Department Operations Center from 2000 to 2001, and for a stint as Deputy Director of the Executive Secretariat Staff from 2001 to 2003. 
 
From July 2004 to July 2007 Wohlers served as Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Skopje, Macedonia, and for part of that time (March to September 2005) served as Chargé d’Affaires. He was then promoted to Director of the Office of Caucasus Affairs and Regional Conflicts in the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs, where he served from August 2007 to August 2011, when he was confirmed as ambassador to Macedonia.  
 
Wohlers and his wife, Mary Jo, have three daughters: Rachel, Julia and Jessica.
 
Wohlers’ brother, Larry, is the U.S. ambassador to the Central African Republic. 
 
New US Ambassador Pledges To Help Macedonia (by Sinisa Jakov Marusic, Balkan Insight)
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Previous U.S. Ambassador to Macedonia

Reeker, Philip
ambassador-image

A native of Pennsylvania, Philip T. Reeker was nominated by President Bush on March 18, 2008, to be US Ambassador to Macedonia. He was confirmed by the Senate on August 1 and sworn in on September 10.  Reeker received a BA from Yale in 1986 and an MBA from the Thunderbird School of Global Management in Arizona in 1991. 

 
A career Foreign Service Officer, Reeker previously served as assistant information officer in Budapest, Hungary from 1993 to 1996; as the public affairs officer in Skopje, Macedonia from 1997 to 1999; and director of press relations at the State Department from 1999 to 2000, during which time he was spokesman for Ambassador Christopher R. Hill and for the Rambouillet Process (Kosovo peace talks). 
 
Reeker was deputy spokesman and deputy assistant secretary in the Bureau of Public Affairs from 2000-2003. He traveled domestically and internationally as the “Spokesman at Large” for the State Department, giving talks and interviews on American foreign policy and diplomacy from 2003 to 2004.
Reeker was the deputy chief of mission in Budapest, Hungary from 2004 to 2007, and from June 2007 until June 2008, he served at the US Embassy in Iraq as the counselor to the ambassador for public affairs.  

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News
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Overview
<p>&nbsp;</p> <div>Once a part of Yugoslavia, Macedonia has enjoyed independence for less than two decades. Like other Balkan countries, Macedonia has struggled with ethnic-based tensions, although not to the degree suffered by other former Yugoslav republics, such Bosnia-Herzegovina. Macedonia&rsquo;s situation has revolved around ethnic Albanians living in the country who have claimed discrimination on the part of Macedonian officials.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Although its leaders have laid claim to the name &ldquo;Macedonia,&rdquo; the country had to accept admission into the United Nations as the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM). This was due to opposition from Macedonia&rsquo;s southern neighbor, Greece, which has protested Macedonia&rsquo;s right to the name. &ldquo;Macedonia&rdquo; is also the name of a large northern province of Greece, and to Greek officials, the use of the name implied Macedonia&rsquo;s interest in territorial expansion into the Greek province. The issue has proven to be a huge obstacle for Macedonia&rsquo;s entrance into NATO. The United States has endorsed Macedonia&rsquo;s entry into the alliance, and in 2004, the Bush administration officially recognized the name &ldquo;Macedonia&rdquo; instead of the earlier FYROM designation. But US support has not been enough for Macedonia to gain entry into NATO, and in November 2008, Macedonian officials filed suit with the International Court of Justice over Greece&rsquo;s continued actions over the name/NATO controversy.</div>
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Basic Information
<p>&nbsp;</p> <div><b>Lay of the Land</b>: Situated in the southern region of the Balkan Peninsula, Macedonia is landlocked and mountainous. It is bordered by Greece to the south, Albania to the west, Kosovo and Serbia to the north and Bulgaria to the east.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Population</b>: 2.1 million</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Religions</b>: Macedonian Orthodox 64.7%, Muslim 33.3%, other&nbsp;Christian 0.4%, other 1.6%.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Ethnic Groups</b>: Macedonian 64.2%, Albanian 25.2%, Turkish 3.9%, Roma 2.7%, Serb1.8%, other 2.2%.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Languages</b>: Macedonian (official) 69.3%, Albanian 30.0%, Turkish 10%, Balkan Romani 6.0%, Romanian (Macedo, Megleno) 0.5%, Balkan Gagauz Turkish 0.2%, Serbian, Adyghe.</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <p>&nbsp;</p>
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History
<div><font size="3" class="Apple-style-span"><span class="Apple-style-span" style="font-size: 13px;"> <div> <div>The ancient kingdom of Macedonia was defeated by Rome and became a Roman province in 148 BC. After the Roman Empire fell, Macedonia was ruled by the Byzantine Empire and then the Ottoman Empire. The Ottoman Turks dominated Macedonia for the next five centuries until 1913. During the 19th and 20th centuries, there was constant struggle by the Balkan powers to possess Macedonia for its economic wealth and its strategic military location. The&nbsp;<a href="http://modern-macedonian-history.blogspot.com/2008/09/macedonia-and-preliminary-treaty-of-san.html">Treaty of San Stefano</a>&nbsp;in 1878, which ended the Russo-Turkish War, gave the largest part of Macedonia to Bulgaria. Bulgaria lost much of its Macedonian territory when it was defeated by the Greeks and Serbs in the Second Balkan War of 1913. Most of Macedonia went to Serbia and the remainder was divided between Greece and Bulgaria.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 1918, Serbia, which included much of Macedonia, joined in union with Croatia, Slovenia, and Montenegro, an entity that became Yugoslavia in 1929. During World War II, Bulgaria joined the Axis powers and occupied parts of Yugoslavia, including Macedonia. During the occupation of their country, Macedonian resistance fighters fought a guerrilla war against the invading troops. The Yugoslavian federation was reestablished after the defeat of Germany in 1945, and in 1946 the government removed the Vardar territory of Macedonia from Serbian control and made it an autonomous Yugoslavian republic. Later, when Yugoslav President Josip Broz Tito recognized the Macedonian people as a separate nation, Macedonia&rsquo;s distinct culture and language were able to flourish.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>On Sept. 8, 1991, Macedonia declared its independence from Yugoslavia and asked for recognition from the European Union nations. It became a member of the UN in 1993 under the provisional name of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) because Greece protested Macedonia&rsquo;s right to the name, which is also the name of a large northern province of Greece. To Greece, the use of the name implied Macedonia&rsquo;s interest in territorial expansion into the Greek province. As part of the dispute, Greece subsequently imposed two trade embargoes against Macedonia.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Tensions between ethnic Albanians and Macedonians arose during the Kosovo crisis, during which more than 140,000 refugees streamed into Macedonia. Most of the refugees returned to Kosovo in 2000. But for those ethnic Albanians already living in Macedonia, frustrations surfaced over their minority status and participation in the government. Tensions erupted into open hostilities in Macedonia in February 2001, when a group of ethnic Albanians near the Kosovo border carried out armed provocations that soon escalated into an insurgency.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Claiming to fight for greater civil rights for ethnic Albanians in Macedonia, the group seized territory and launched attacks against government forces. Many observers ascribed other motives to the so-called National Liberation Army (NLA), including the assertion of political control over affected areas. The insurgency spread through northern and western Macedonia during the first half of 2001. Under international mediation, a ceasefire was brokered in July 2001, and the government coalition was expanded in July 2001 to form a grand coalition which included the major opposition parties.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In September 2002, elections resulted in the formation of a center-left coalition that ousted the governing coalition, which had been embroiled in the previous year&rsquo;s guerrilla insurgency. Branko Crvenkovski of the Together for Macedonia coalition became the new prime minister. In February 2004, President Boris Trajkovski was killed in a plane crash. Prime Minister Crvenkovski was then elected president. Since then three prime ministers have served under Crvenkovski.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In August 2004, parliament approved legislation redrawing internal borders and giving ethnic Albanians more local autonomy.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>On June 1, 2008, one person died and nine people were wounded when violence erupted between two ethnic Albanian groups, the Democratic Union for Integration and the Democratic Party of Albanians, during parliamentary elections. At least 17 polling stations suspended voting due to intimidation, violence, and missing ballot boxes and voting materials. The election interruption further impeded Macedonia&rsquo;s chance of becoming a member of the European Union.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski, of the coalition For a Better Macedonia party, won parliamentary elections on June 1, 2008, with 48% of the vote. The Democratic Union for Integration and the Democratic Party of Albanians took 11% and 10% of the vote, respectively.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.historyofmacedonia.org/">History of Macedonia.org</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.macedonia.com/english/history/">History of Macedonia (Macedonia.com)</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.history-of-macedonia.com/">History-of-macedonia.com</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.ancientmacedonia.com/">Ancient Macedonia.com</a></div> <div><a href="http://modern-macedonian-history.blogspot.com/">Modern Macedonian History Blogspot.com</a></div> <div>&nbsp;</div> </div> </span></font></div>
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Macedonia's Newspapers
<p>&nbsp;</p> <div><a href="http://www.onlinenewspapers.com/macedoni.htm">Macedonia's Newspapers</a></div>
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History of U.S. Relations with Macedonia
<p>The first Macedonian to reach America may have been Dragan of Ohrid. Numerous legends surround this colorful figure who probably sailed with Columbus to America and may have returned to the New World with his own expedition to the marshy swamplands of modern-day Venezuela, which Dragan named &ldquo;Venezia&rdquo; for its similarities to the lagoon-laced Italian city.&nbsp;</p> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div>In the 1860s, Protestant missionaries to the Balkans stirred up interest in America and sent a number of Macedonians to universities in the US. Widespread immigration didn&rsquo;t begin until the turn of the 20th century; 50,000 Macedonian Bulgarians arrived between 1903-1906, and a few thousand more continued to come until the advent of World War I. Many Macedonians returned home after the conclusion of the war, leaving only 20,000 residing in the US.&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The Immigration Act of 1924 halted direct immigration, although many continued to come via Canada. By the conclusion of World War II, about 50,000 Macedonians resided in the US.&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>With the formation of the Yugoslav Federation (which supported Macedonian autonomy), many Macedonians elected to remain at home, and only 2,000 arrived between 1945 and 1960. The liberalization of immigration policy in the 1960s and 1970s resulted in 40,000 Macedonians emigrating to Canada, the United States and Australia. An additional 70,000 Macedonians living in Greece emigrated in the wake of World War II, when Slavs were expelled from the region.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Documentation of Macedonian immigrants has always been imprecise because many people coming from within the geographical boundaries of Macedonia considered themselves ethnically Bulgarian, Turkish, Serbian, Albanian, or Greek, and they were listed as such on immigration records. Thus the current census figures likely under-represent the Macedonian population in the US.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Because most Macedonians came to the US in search of economic opportunity, they settled in industrial centers, primarily in the Midwest. The states with the largest Macedonian populations are Michigan (7,801), New York (4,740), Ohio (4,468), Indiana (4,254), and New Jersey (3,772).</div>
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Current U.S. Relations with Macedonia
<p>The United States formally recognized Macedonia on February 8, 1994, and the two countries established full diplomatic relations on September 13, 1995. The US Liaison Office was upgraded to an embassy in February 1996, and the first American ambassador to Skopje arrived in July 1996. In deference to its ally, Greece, the US officially recognized Macedonia as the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. But that changed on November 4, 2004 when the Bush administration gave recognition to &ldquo;Macedonia&rdquo; only, much to the consternation of officials in Athens.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The United States condemned those behind the 2001 insurgency in Macedonia and reinforced its support for the government. Macedonia continues to play a key role as the <a href="http://www.nato.int/KFOR/">Kosovo Force</a>&rsquo;s (KFOR) rear area, hosting the logistical supply line for KFOR troops in Kosovo. As part of these efforts, Macedonia hosts NATO troops, including US forces, in support of NATO operations in Kosovo and to assist Macedonia&rsquo;s efforts to reform its military to meet NATO standards. Close US-Macedonian bilateral defense cooperation continues. Macedonia also contributes troops to international coalition operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Bilateral assistance budgeted to Macedonia under the Support for East European Democracy (SEED) Act totaled more than $440 million from 1990 to 2008. Macedonia received approximately $28 million in SEED Act assistance in 2007 and is receiving approximately $22 million in 2008.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>US Agency for International Development (USAID) is targeting capacity building for local government officials, who will have more authority and responsibility devolved from the central government, as well as providing grants to fund small-scale infrastructure projects. A priority of US assistance is to facilitate Macedonia&rsquo;s transition to a market economy and increase employment and growth levels.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>USAID economic assistance is focused on two levels. At the macro-level, programs target improvements in the business-enabling environment by helping to bring legislative and regulatory frameworks in line with EU standards and improving the transparency and efficiency of government services through technology. At the micro-level, assistance is given to firms and agribusinesses to increase their competitiveness and productivity, coupled with initiatives to attract foreign investment and stimulate local investment. Training programs that provide career-enhancing education to prepare youth and adults for growth sectors are also supported. A resident US Department of the Treasury advisor, who will be phased out in 2008, has assisted the Ministry of Finance in improving strategy, planning and execution, and public expenditure management.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>USAID is also focused on helping the Macedonian government and civil society combat corruption. A US Department of Justice Resident Legal Advisor and a Senior Law Enforcement Advisor are focusing on strengthening the independence of the judiciary, efficacy of public prosecution, reform of criminal codes, increasing police capacity, and combating trafficking in persons and organized crime.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>USAID programs also are seeking to improve education in Macedonia. Targets include improving teaching techniques, modernizing vocational education, introducing information and communication technology (ICT) as a learning tool in the classroom and providing broadband Internet service throughout the country using primary and secondary schools as a platform. Other programs address interethnic cooperation, assistance to the Roma minority, performance improvement of key institutions, and corruption.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>On May 7, 2008, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Foreign Minister Antonio Milososki signed a joint <a href="http://www.state.gov/p/eur/rls/or/104441.htm">Declaration of Strategic Partnership and Cooperation</a>.</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div>A total of 38,051 people identified themselves as being of Macedonian ancestry in the 2000 US census.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 2006, 8,275 Americans visited Macedonia. The number of tourists has increased gradually since 2002, when 6,997 Americans journeyed to Macedonia.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>A total of 3,181 Macedonians visited the US in 2006. In the last five years, tourism peaked in 2002 (3,404 visitors), and reached a low in 2004 (2,633 visitors).</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.iht.com/articles/2004/11/05/mace_ed3__0.php">U.S. grants Macedonia the name recognition it wants</a> (by Nicholas Wood, International Herald Tribune)</div>
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Where Does the Money Flow
<p>US imports from Macedonia totaled $72.7 million in 2007, led by steelmaking and ferroalloying materials (unmanufactured) at $37.1 million (after registering $0 in the previous years). Other imports on the rise include nickel, up from $0 to $6.8 million, tobacco, and waxes and nonfood oils, up from $7.9 million to $10.4 million.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Recently, the US has begun to dramatically cutback on its import of apparel and household goods (cotton), down from $18.8 million to $4.4 million, and (wool), dropping from $15.2 million to $1.1 million.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The most significant exports from the US to Macedonia are pharmaceutical preparations, rising from $79,000 to $9 million, and meat and poultry, which has steadily averaged $6 million a year from 2003 to 2007.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Overall, the US is running a trade deficit with Macedonia ($72.7 million in imports vs. $33.5 million in exports in 2007).</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The US sold $2.1 million in defense articles and services to Macedonia in 2007.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The US gave $33.9 million in aid to Macedonia in 2007. The budget allotted the most funds to Education ($7.5 million), Private Sector Competitiveness ($6.6 million), Stabilization Operations and Security Sector Reform ($5.4 million), and Good Governance ($3.3 million).&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In the 2008 budget estimate, funding decreased to $26.1 million, and the 2009 budget request will further reduce aid down to $23.8 million. The 2009 budget will allocate the most funds to Private Sector Competitiveness ($6 million), Stabilization Operations and Security Sector Reform ($5.2 million), and Rule of Law of Human Rights ($2.8 million).</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/product/enduse/imports/c4794.html">Imports from Macedonia</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/product/enduse/exports/c4794.html">Exports to Macedonia</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.state.gov/t/pm/64817.htm">Macedonia: Security Assistance</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/101368.pdf">Congressional Budget for Foreign Operations (pages 478-481)</a> (PDF)</div>
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Controversies
<p><b>Macedonia Takes Greece to Court over Name, NATO Dispute</b></p> <div>The United States&rsquo; support for Macedonia&rsquo;s entry into the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) hasn&rsquo;t been enough to get the small Balkan nation into the military alliance. In the spring of 2008, Greece blocked Macedonia&rsquo;s entry into NATO because it insisted Macedonia change its name first. The controversy dates back to Macedonia&rsquo;s declaration of independence in 1991, when Greece insisted the newly independent country be admitted to the UN as the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM). Greece has maintained that the name &ldquo;Macedonia&rdquo; belongs only to its large northern province which borders on the country of Macedonia, and Greek officials have insisted that the country of Macedonia harbors designs on the Greek territory of Macedonia.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>During a NATO summit in April, the US called for Greece and Macedonia to settle the issue so that Macedonia could join the alliance. But the two sides were unable to come to an agreement, and NATO&rsquo;s rules require unanimous consent of all members before a new country can be admitted.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In November 2008 Macedonia filed a complaint with the International Court of Justice over Greece&rsquo;s stonewalling of Macedonia&rsquo;s entry into NATO, claiming Greece had violated a 1995 agreement between the two countries.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The vast majority of people in Macedonia are against changing their country&rsquo;s name to become a member of NATO. According to a poll by the Center for Research and Policy Making, 82% of respondents rejected Greece&rsquo;s condition to support Macedonia&rsquo;s accession to NATO.</div> <div><a href="http://www.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/europe/11/18/macedonia.dispute/index.html">Name dispute lands Greece, Macedonia in court</a> (by Anthee Carassava, CNN)</div> <div><a href="http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,544167,00.html">Which Macedonia Was Alexander the Great From?</a> (Der Spiegel)</div> <div><a href="http://www.worldpoliticsreview.com/article.aspx?id=1854">What's in a Name? For Greece and Macedonia, Perhaps the Future of NATO</a> (by Adam Herbert, World Politics Review)</div> <div><a href="http://www.angus-reid.com/polls/view/30120">Macedonians Won&rsquo;t Give Up Name for NATO</a> (Angus Reid Global Monitor)</div>
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Human Rights
<p>The 2007 State Department report on human rights in Macedonia found that police abuse of suspects continued to be a problem, and there were allegations of police harassment of ethnic minorities. Also, corruption in the interior and justice ministries, and political pressure exerted on them, the courts, and the public prosecutor&rsquo;s office, impeded the investigation and prosecution of some allegations of human rights abuse. In addition, societal discrimination against ethnic minorities, particularly Roma, continued to be a problem.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Prison conditions barely met international standards. Significant problems noted by international observers were poor hygienic conditions and medical care, inadequate state funding, and overcrowding.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>International observers and local NGOs cited corruption, lack of transparency, and political pressure within the Ministry of the Interior as hindering efforts to fight crime, particularly organized crime.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>There were reports that police continued to call suspects and witnesses to police stations for &ldquo;informative talks&rdquo; without informing them of their rights. Most allegations of this practice involved accusations that police targeted the individuals for political reasons. The individuals were not arrested or held for extended periods of time.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The State Department characterized the judiciary as &ldquo;weak, inefficient, and occasionally appeared to be influenced by political pressure, intimidation, and corruption.&rdquo; Some judicial officials accused the government of using its budgetary authority and modest allocations to the court system as instruments to exert control over the judiciary.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Media institutions and reporting were divided along ethnic and political lines, with the most striking divisions visible in reporting on controversial political issues. There were allegations of threats against media outlets that did not report favorably on the government, as well as more subtle government pressures. Macedonian Radio and Television, which generally favored the government's views on political issues, was the country&rsquo;s sole public broadcaster.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>According to the World Bank&rsquo;s Worldwide Governance Indicators, government corruption was a serious problem. Instances of corruption in the police and judicial systems were of particular concern.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>There were reports of police violence against Roma and Albanians, including beatings during arrest and while in detention. The most widely noted incident involved the &ldquo;Mountain Storm&rdquo; police operation in the village of Brodec, which involved a number of arrests of suspected gang members.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Ethnic Albanians continued to complain of official discrimination. They were concerned about the slow progress in reaching what they considered to be equitable representation in government ministries, while ethnic Macedonians often claimed that they were targeted for downsizing regardless of job performance. Some ethnic Albanians claimed they were effectively disenfranchised by discrimination in citizenship decisions.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Ethnic Turks also complained of governmental, societal, and cultural discrimination. Their main concerns were slow progress in achieving equitable representation in government institutions, the absence of Turkish majority municipalities in the 2004 municipal redistricting, and the inadequacy of Turkish-language education and media.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Roma complained of widespread societal discrimination. NGOs and international experts reported that Roma were often denied job opportunities, access to public welfare funds, and entrance to establishments such as restaurants and cafes.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2007/100571.htm">U.S. State Department</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.amnesty.org/en/region/europeandcentralasia/balkans/macedonia">Amnesty International</a></div>
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Debate
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Past Ambassadors
<p>Christopher R. Hill<br /> Appointment: Jul 2, 1996<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 29, 1996<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 2, 1999</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>M. Michael Einik<br /> Appointment: Jul 7, 1999<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 7, 1999<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 4, 2001</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Lawrence E. Butler<br /> Appointment: Apr 1, 2002<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Apr 22, 2002<br /> Termination of Mission: Mar 26, 2005</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Gillian A. Milovanvic<br /> Appointment: Aug 2, 2005<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 6, 2005<br /> Termination of Mission: 2008</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ho/po/com/10938.htm">Former U.S. Ambassadors to Macedonia</a></div>
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Macedonia's Ambassador to the U.S.
ambassador-image Jolevski, Zoran

 

Zoran Jolevski has served as Macedonia’s Ambassador to the United States since March 2007. Jolevski received his Bachelor of Economics , his Master of Science in Law and his PhD in International Economy from the University of Sts. Cyril and Methodius in Skopje, Macedonia. He speaks English, Serbo-Croatian, Bulgarian, and some French.
 
From January 1983 to January 1988, Jolevski worked as a freelance tour director. From January 1988 to October 1994, he served in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, first as responsible officer for preparing all necessary documents for observer status of Macedonia in GATT, as well as desk officer for the UK and Germany (1988-1992) and then as secretary to the Coordination Group on Ex-Yugoslavia Succession Issues (1992-1994).
 
From 1994 to 1998, Jolevski served as first secretary for the Permanent Mission of Macedonia to the World Trade Organization and the United Nations Office at Geneva.
 
From September 1998 to December 1999, Jolevski worked in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, first as Deputy National Coordinator on Humanitarian Issues for the Kosovo refugee crises and then on WTO accession and other international trade and financial affairs. He was an assistant to Macedonian President Boris Trajkovski.
 
From January 2000 to May 2004, he served as chief of staff of the cabinet of the President of Macedonia and as Chief Adviser to the Minister of Economy on WTO accession. In May 2003, he taught international economic relations and foreign trade at European University.
 
From 2004 to 2006, he served as chief of party “WTO Compliance Activity” and then “Macedonian Business Environment Activity” for two USAID funded projects involving Booz Allen and Hamilton.
 

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Macedonia's Embassy Web Site in the U.S.
<p><a href="http://www.macedonianembassy.org/">Macedonia&rsquo;s Embassy in the U.S.</a></p>
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U.S. Ambassador to Macedonia

Wohlers, Paul
ambassador-image

Paul D. Wohlers, a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, was confirmed as U.S. ambassador to the Balkan nation of Macedonia on August 2, 2011. Wohlers has previous experience in Macedonia. 

 
Born circa 1952, Wohlers graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1974 with a B.S. in International Affairs and served as a Naval Flight Officer, flying in the E-2C Hawkeye with VAW-121, attached to the USS Eisenhower. He earned a J.D. from the University of Washington School of Law in 1982. 
 
Wohlers’s first foreign posting was to the U.S. embassy in Bucharest, Romania, where he served from 1985 to 1987. Returning stateside, Wohlers worked on arms control issues in the State Department Bureau of Political-Military Affairs from 1987 to 1990, and returned to Eastern Europe to work in the embassy at Moscow, Russia, from 1991 to 1993. 
 
Switching gears from Europe to Asia, Wohlers served as Desk Officer for Bangladesh in the Bureau of South Asian Affairs from 1993 to 1994, and served on the Executive Secretariat Staff from 1994 to 1996. He was rewarded with an assignment to the embassy in Nicosia, Cyprus, from 1997 to 2000, returning to Washington, DC, to serve as a Senior Watch Officer in the State Department Operations Center from 2000 to 2001, and for a stint as Deputy Director of the Executive Secretariat Staff from 2001 to 2003. 
 
From July 2004 to July 2007 Wohlers served as Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Skopje, Macedonia, and for part of that time (March to September 2005) served as Chargé d’Affaires. He was then promoted to Director of the Office of Caucasus Affairs and Regional Conflicts in the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs, where he served from August 2007 to August 2011, when he was confirmed as ambassador to Macedonia.  
 
Wohlers and his wife, Mary Jo, have three daughters: Rachel, Julia and Jessica.
 
Wohlers’ brother, Larry, is the U.S. ambassador to the Central African Republic. 
 
New US Ambassador Pledges To Help Macedonia (by Sinisa Jakov Marusic, Balkan Insight)
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Previous U.S. Ambassador to Macedonia

Reeker, Philip
ambassador-image

A native of Pennsylvania, Philip T. Reeker was nominated by President Bush on March 18, 2008, to be US Ambassador to Macedonia. He was confirmed by the Senate on August 1 and sworn in on September 10.  Reeker received a BA from Yale in 1986 and an MBA from the Thunderbird School of Global Management in Arizona in 1991. 

 
A career Foreign Service Officer, Reeker previously served as assistant information officer in Budapest, Hungary from 1993 to 1996; as the public affairs officer in Skopje, Macedonia from 1997 to 1999; and director of press relations at the State Department from 1999 to 2000, during which time he was spokesman for Ambassador Christopher R. Hill and for the Rambouillet Process (Kosovo peace talks). 
 
Reeker was deputy spokesman and deputy assistant secretary in the Bureau of Public Affairs from 2000-2003. He traveled domestically and internationally as the “Spokesman at Large” for the State Department, giving talks and interviews on American foreign policy and diplomacy from 2003 to 2004.
Reeker was the deputy chief of mission in Budapest, Hungary from 2004 to 2007, and from June 2007 until June 2008, he served at the US Embassy in Iraq as the counselor to the ambassador for public affairs.  

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