Macedonian Minority Organization OMO Ilinden
Intimidated by Bulgarian Police at Macedonian Commemoration


October 4, 2002

Macedonian Human Rights Movement of Canada - Press Release

On Saturday, July 27, OMO Ilinden, a Macedonian minority organization in Bulgaria, gathered at King Samuel's fortress near the town of Petrich in order to commemorate the 99th anniversary of the Ilinden uprising (Macedonian uprising against the Ottoman Empire in 1903).

Approximately 1,500 people attended the ceremony, which included speeches and Macedonian music and dances. While the ceremony was taking place, plainclothes police officers videotaped the OMO Ilinden members and supporters in an effort to intimidate them.

The following day, journalists with pictures of the event visited the individual participants and asked them why they would attend such an anti-Bulgarian event.

Macedonians in Bulgaria continuously face discrimination and intimidation when asserting their ethnic Macedonian identity. As a country that is hoping to enter the European Union, Bulgaria must respect its minorities'human rights and put an end to such violations.

For more information on the Macedonian minority in Bulgaria please see the MHRMC's press release about OMO Ilinden's event of Sept. 12 (
www.mhrmi.org/news/2002/october01.asp) and the MHRMC's 2001 Annual Report  The Macedonian Minority in Bulgaria (www.mhrmi.org/news/2002/january21.asp)

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Bill Nicholov
Macedonian Human Rights Movement of Canada
Address: P.O. Box 44532, 2376 Eglinton Ave. East, Toronto, Canada M1K 5K3
Tel: 416-493-9555 Fax: 416-412-3385
E-mail:
info@mhrmi.org
Website: www.mhrmi.org

       
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