US Department of State Blacklists Struga Mayor Merko

The US Department of State reached a decision to make Struga Mayor Ramiz Merko
generally ineligible for entry in the US. The official decision of the Department of State
reads that while serving as Struga’s mayor, Merko misappropriated funds and interfered
with judicial and other public processes, damaging the public’s faith in North
Macedonia’s democratic institutions and officials. The Department of State also adds that
today’s action sends a message that the US stands with North Macedonia to foster
stability through the strengthening of democratic institutions and addressing rule of law
deficiencies. The decision is effective against Merko and members of his family.