Macedonia opposition seeks pardons for 33 protesters

SKOPJE, Macedonia (AP) — Macedonia’s main conservative opposition party is demanding a full pardon for 33 people currently on trial for their alleged role in a violent invasion into parliament last year.

The VMRO-DPMNE party made the formal request Monday to parliament.

More than a 100 people, including lawmakers and journalists, were injured in April 2017 action, when protesters stormed into parliament in Skopje to try and block the election of ethnic Albanian former Defense Minister Talat Xhaferi as speaker. Defendants include former Interior Minister Mitko Cavkov and five opposition lawmakers.

The ruling Social Democrats, whose coalition holds a majority in the 120-member parliament, described the opposition proposal as a “brutal intrusion into the judiciary.”

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