Update to Response to Information Request MCD20629.E of 9 May 1995 regarding the situation of ethnic Albanians [MCD21010.E]

In a telephone interview on 9 May 1995, and subsequently confirmed in writing, the executive director of the Open Media Research Institute in Prague, a research enterprise dedicated to the study of the former Soviet Union and East-Central and Southeastern Europe, provided the following information. The Albanian population of the Republic of Macedonia, which makes up about 23% of the population, resides predominantly in the north and west, in a crescent stretching from Kumanovo, through Skopje to Tetovo, then south through Gostivar and Debar to Struga. Ethnic Albanians constitute the largest minority population in this area, and many live in villages which are entirely Albanian. In general, the Albanian population is able to live safely. The executive director added that some ethnic Albanians have been subject to discrimination in Macedonia in the past. Thus, allegations of police mistreatment of Albanians are very likely true, although the executive director has no data to verify such claims. The majority of those in the republic's police force are ethnic Macedonians (who incidentally constitute about 66% of the state's population). The Minister of Internal Affairs, Ljubomir Frckovski, is currently actively seeking to increase the number of ethnic Albanians in the police force substantially.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the DIRB within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum.


Open Media Research Institute (OMRI), Prague. 9 May 1995. Telephone interview with executive director.