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Macedonian president pleas for calm after violence in parliament


FYR Macedonia

Macedonian president pleas for calm after violence in parliament

The president of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia has appealed for calm after violence in parliament on Thursday night.

Fighting erupted after demonstrators stormed the building in protest at the election of an ethnic Albanian as parliament speaker.

Live television footage showed Social Democratic leader Zoran Zaev with blood trickling from one side of his forehead, not long after he announced that the majority coalition led by his party had elected Talat Xhaferi.

Nationalist lawmakers challenged the vote despite a four month deadlock in talks to form a new government.

“There are no questions that cannot be resolved through dialogue, in accordance with the constitution of Macedonia. That’s why, I invite all the leaders of parliamentary parties to come to my office so we can discuss the current situation,” said Gjorge Ivanov, Macedonian president.

Elections were held in December 2016 but no government has been formed yet.

A parliamentary alliance between the opposition Social Democrats and an ethnic Albanian party has sparked daily street protest by nationalist in Skopje but this violence has deepened the country’s crisis.