Sunday, November 25, 2007

FYROM : Article 179 Tales

How the law on "denigrating Macedonism" is an insult to free expression

As you know the several NGO and Amnesty International is extremely concerned at the frequent use of Article 301 of the Turkish Penal Code (TPC) to prosecute human rights defenders, journalists and other members of civil society peacefully expressing their dissenting opinion. Article 301, on the denigration of Turkishness, the Republic, and the foundation and institutions of the State, was introduced with the legislative reforms of 1 June 2005 and replaced Article 159 of the old penal code.

It states that:
Public denigration of Turkishness, the Republic or the Grand National Assembly of Turkey shall be punishable by imprisonment of between six months and three years

What about FYROM ?

Many people we wonder why so silence as about in this multiethinic Republic when is known that the 45% are not officially Slavmacedonians.

In FYROM there is a similar article - as the Turkish one -in the "Criminal Codex of the Republic of Macedonia" ("Krivien Zakonik na Republika Makedonija")

Article 179
"The one who with intent to mock shall publicly expose to ridicule the Macedonian people and the nationalities, shall be punished with prison from three months to three years."

Now you know why the nationalities in FYROM are not able to say free theirs opinion as about the origin or the language or the heritage. "Insulting" Macedonism can lead to prosecution and jail.
Every body knows the case of the Bishop Jovan.

Why Amnesty and NGO like Helsinki Monitors still silelnce as about this think ?

Why EU and USA has never expressed serious concern about the limits on freedom of expression in FYROM and the restrictive way Article 179 ?

How many are (or were) on trial under Article 179 that makes it a crime to insult Macedonism or state organs ? Were/are Greeks among them ?

Is it insult to say that the today Slavmacedonians cannot establish a link with antiquity as they entered in the Balkans centuries after the demise of the ancient Macedonian Kindgdom ?

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