No Breakthrough in Macedonia Coalition Talks, Hours before Deadline

Nikola Gruevski. File photo, EPA/BGNES

No decision has been taken on whether to form a government between conservative VMRO-DPMNE and ethnic Albanian DUI party in Macedonia, local media report.

The DUI, the third-largest party in Macedonia's new Parliament which however has only 10 of the 120 seats, has not taken yet an official decision on whether to join hands with Nikola Gruevski's party for another time, spokesperson Bujar Osmani is quoted by as saying.

The development comes just hours before a deadline has expired to form a government with the mandate of VMRO-DPMNE, the largest party after the election.

The DUI had placed a demand for bilingualism in Macedonia - with Macedonian and Albanian both becoming official languages and key appointments to power. Another bone of contention is extending the mandate of the Special Prosecutor's Office formed amidst the past few years' political crisis to look into the massive wiretapping affair involing Gruevski and his party.

"All options are on the table," Osmani has announced.

In case the DUI decides to ditch its previous coalition partners, the mandate will be handed to SDSM party of Zoran Zaev, the second-largest party after the election.

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