Zoran Zaev, President of SDSM
Respected citizens, respected journalists,
I know that based on the materials we have disclosed to date, the Truth about Macedonia is astonishing, difficult, painful and incomprehensible for any normal person.
Today, respected citizens and journalists, we will disclose additional evidence and arguments about the cruel and sinister truth; about the mechanisms of total and utter control established by Nikola Gruevski, his cousin Saso Mijalkov, and a handful of their associates; about the manner in which these people succeeded to dictate and create a false reality, thus maintaining themselves in power.
Today, we unveil that all of this has been done directly from one center of power: the Administration for Security and Counter Intelligence, whose machines for processing, following and monitoring have grinded more than 100 journalists in the Republic of Macedonia.
According to materials that were provided to us, following and monitoring measures were used for all of these journalists, both from the pro-governmental media and professional journalists who were critically observing the state-of-affairs in Macedonia.
Regarding the former, editors-in-chief at pro-governmental media outlets, we are in possession of audio materials that unmask the direct link: Prime Minister – ASCI – the media. They demonstrate that the Director of ASCI, Saso Mijalkov, in coordination with the Prime Minister and his close associates, in the true meaning of the word, are ruling and managing media and journalists, not only private media outlets, but also the public broadcaster, MTV.
On the first recording you will hear the Minister of Interior, Gordana Jankulovska, handpicking with the Chief of Gruevski’s Cabinet, Martin Protoger, the media outlets that are to cover an event organized by the MOI.
From the next recording you will learn that close associates to Gruevski have directly called the editor-in-chief at TV Sitel, to order news coverage. More scandalously, the recording includes an admission by the editor-in-chief Latas, when addressing the irritated Kanceska-Milevska, that prime-time news programme on TV Sitel is full of propaganda, stories and polls ordered directly by Prime Minister Gruevski, or in the words used by Latas, “by your Prime Minister”.
Here is what a journalist at the national broadcaster MTV will encounter, when challenging an order personally given by the Minister of Interior, Jankuloska. This conversation between Jankuloska and her assistant and MOI spokesperson, Ivo Kotevski, reveals that the Minister has prohibited a show programme and threatened that in the unlikely event her demands are not met, the journalist “will get the boot”.
The next wiretapped conversation between Latas and the Director of ASCI, Saso Mijalkov, dear citizens, features a direct acknowledgement made by the Director of ASCI, Gruevski’s cousin, Mijalkov, of the fact that, in his words, he HAS FIXED VELIJA! The recording shows that the Director of ASCI is not satisfied with what Sitel and Kanal 5 are delivering for, as he openly says, the millions they have been granted. Mijalkov refers to an amount of 2 MILLION EURO.
The astounding admission of the Director of ASCI, Mijalkov, that he had “fixed” Velija, is not the only “massacre”, excuse the expression because there is no other apt word for what Gruevski and Mijalkov have done to the media. The next conversation that takes place between Jankulovska and Mijalkov, further confirms that the Director of ASCI, in coordination with Gruevski and the executive director of MPM, Srgjan Kerim, “has sorted out” the three newspapers published by MPM. Listen.
The final recording for today reveals that Gruevski has asked Minister Janakieski to make a payment transfer from the account of the Agency of Electronic Communications in the amount of HALF A MILLION EURO to settle debts for documentary features which have already been produced. Gruevski orders Janakieski to justify these funds under the pretence of “social responsibility” and, in an attempt to strengthen the public impression, advises the latter to indicate the title of the first patriotic documentary as “About the Macedonian Struggle for Freedom”.
These recordings, dear citizens and journalists, regretfully, are not all that we will reveal today. What you are about to hear will shock you, just as it shocked us when brave people from Gruevski’s services, unable to carry the burden, shared the materials with us.
As I said earlier, more than 100 journalists were followed and had their communications monitored. Such actions were taken when they communicated among themselves and when they communicated with public figures.
The materials we have received bear the mark of ASCI documents and show that professional, critically-minded journalists have been followed and neatly analysed in ASCI written reports.
All analyses for individual journalists bear the mark “prepared by the Administration for Security and Counter Intelligence”.
Later, we will provide the relevant documents to the journalists in question. They will be able to obtain them in person, at the end of the press conference. Among the twenty thousand wiretapped citizens, there are many other journalists and therefore, in the period that follows, we will continuously forward the materials to journalists who were subject of ASCI measures of following and analysis.
Intricacies about the manner in which Nikola Gruevski and his group of close associates operate are best represented by this ASCI Report from the following and analysis of media reports of critically-minded journalists.
The document is titled Abstract on the interest in and communications of opposition-minded journalists about the work and the conclusions of the Inquiry Committee tasked with clarifying events in the Parliament from 24th December 2012!
Imagine, while the Commission for 24th December was in session, Gruevski and his associates intercepted communications of journalists for the purpose of designing a strategy for their positions and for public appearances. Horrific!
This is a fierce attack on all societal processes in Macedonia and after today’s press conference, nobody should have any doubt about what type of regime we are living under during the years of Gruevski’s governance.
I left the most difficult revelation for last, because it is heart-wrenching to be spoken out loud, let alone be discussed.
The most followed, most wiretapped, and a target of Saso Mijalkov’s secret services for years is the doyen of journalism in Macedonia, the editor, journalist and owner of the weekly FOKUS, Nikola Mladenov.
His dossier was filed under a special title in the ASCI database: Abstract from ASCI database on intercepted communications of the owner of the weekly Fokus, Nikola Mladenov, 2011-2013.
This dossier belongs to Nikola Mladenov’s family and will be handed over to them, in a manner of their choice.
I am asking you to grasp the seriousness of these materials and why I would not like to talk anymore about this today, which does not necessarily mean I will not talk about this in the future!
Respected citizens, journalists, friends and fellows,
This is yet another piece of information about the core-shaking Truth for Macedonia, about the state we live in and about the people we are dealing with.
Today, the entire domestic and international public has learned that targets of communication interception are also journalists and media owners.
Honestly, I hope that as of today, in the best interest of citizens and in the best interest of the Republic of Macedonia, media owners, editors and journalists under government control will gather the courage and strength to break the chains of this government.
We continue. This evil will be stopped, I promise, and it will never be repeated again!