Published in DARROW
“All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights”. Unless they’re Macedonian. On December 10, the United Nations celebrated its annual Human Rights Day and proclaimed their adherence to, and promotion of, the first article of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, while simultaneously ramping up its efforts to eradicate my ethnic group.
For the past three decades, the UN has been violating its own charter, international law and human rights conventions in its attempts to change the name of the Republic of Macedonia, the definition of “Macedonian”, and the identity and history of an entire ethnic group. Not only do these acts constitute cultural genocide, but they also constitute genocide – as per the United Nations’ own definition of the term.
To the UN member-states that support this policy, what is your explanation?
Respecting and promoting human rights for all – unless you’re Macedonian – has become an unofficial amendment to the UN Charter, as it is blatantly violating two of its bedrock principles:
Article 2 (1) – “The Organization is based on the principle of the sovereign equality of all its Members;” and
Article 2 (7) – “Nothing contained in the present Charter shall authorize the United Nations to intervene in matters which are essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of any state or shall require the Members to submit such matters to settlement under the present Charter;”
“Sovereign” and “equal” members have the right to their own name and identity. Nothing authorizes the United Nations to interfere in the internal affairs of any nation-state. Legally and morally, the United Nations has no right to force a name and identity change for Macedonia and the Macedonian people.
And we are not just referring to Macedonians in the Republic of Macedonia. The entire region of Macedonia was partitioned in 1913 (a fact admitted by all, oppressors included) among Serbia (now the independent Republic of Macedonia), Bulgaria, Greece and Albania. Macedonians have been fighting attempts at eradication ever since. Never did we think that it would also be against attacks by the UN.
Greece, ironically, outlawed the term “Macedonia” in 1913 and denied its existence until a dramatic propaganda switch in 1988, when it began a campaign of trying to deceive the world into believing that Macedonia was “Greek”. Let’s not forget though, that our other oppressors also claim Macedonia. Or, instead of being bogged down in a brutal game of Balkan roulette, we could just use common sense. Macedonia is Macedonian.
In a second appeal to common sense (cross your fingers), let’s hope that the United Nations actually starts adhering to its own charter and the principles that it claims to uphold. No, change that. We don’t need hope. We all need to demand that the United Nations immediately accept the Republic of Macedonia’s membership under its proper name, and legally and permanently end any attempts to change it.
Bill Nicholov, President
Macedonian Human Rights Movement International