For the first time in 19 years, there was a census in the Republic of Northern Macedonia (RNM) last September. The results were announced days ago and it turned out that with a population of 2,000,000, there are only 3504 Bulgarians. Here is what Petar Kolev, chairman of the Civic Democratic Union Party, said on this occasion in Studio Actualno:
working together, we could not imagine that we would witness such a brutal forgery. Which is largely a classic insult not only to the Bulgarian state, but mainly to the Bulgarians living in the Republic of Northern Macedonia. We are not a National Statistical Institute or the Ministry of Justice. I think that the most accurate data on how many Bulgarians live in the RNM should be able to give some institutions of a modern European and democratic country. To my great regret, anyone can see, if they are well-intentioned, look at all these facts and find that things are not really what someone is trying to present. It is illogical to have nearly 90,000 Bulgarian citizens (i.e. Macedonians with Bulgarian passports), to have another 30-40,000 who are in the process of obtaining Bulgarian citizenship, who according to the Bulgarian Citizenship Act have provided documents not only for them, but also for their ancestors, that they are of Bulgarian origin and suddenly there is such a census, in which the number is fixed at about 3500.
We had information at the time of the census that such a process begins with a clear vision to reduce as much as possible the number of the Bulgarian community in Macedonia with the ultimate goal to present to the Bulgarian and Macedonian society that this is an insignificant part of the Macedonian population, with the clear thought our main request, which is not only clearing the historical truth change of the Macedonian constitution and the registration of the Bulgarians as a nation-building people, to be eliminated as a necessity. Apparently, all these minds in Skopje, who have been working in this so-called process of de-Bulgarianization for years, had calculated that such a move would end this process and the topic of Bulgarians living in RNM would never be opened again.
Of course, we sent a formal request to the Macedonian government and to the Macedonian National Statistical Institute with something that is absolutely well-argued and logical. If this census is really fair, give every citizen in the RNM the opportunity to ask the institute and get an official document on how it was counted at this census. If there is a discrepancy, in this letter we wrote what is the procedure by which these discrepancies can be changed.
Finally, we asked what is the criminal responsibility of the persons who did this thing, because it is a change or substitution of personal data, which is a crime under Macedonian law.