Reactions to Opening of Bulgarian Culture Centre in Bitola Continue

The opening of the Bulgarian Culture Centre “Vancho Mihailov” in Bitola on Saturday is still provoking reactions by the public in North Macedonia. President of the Macedonian team in the Macedonian-Bulgarian Commission on Historical Affairs Dragi Gjorgiev said that the opening of a Bulgarian centre with the name of Vancho Mihaliov is nothing but a mere provocation and attempt to jeopardise the bilateral relations between Skopje and Sofia. “It is a provocation for one to name a cultural club by a historical figure, a person known for their denial of the existence of Macedonian people and culture separate from the Bulgarian, and we can add to this the fact that Mihailov had nothing to do with culture in the first place. Awakening of the memories for people and events from the dark parts of our history will result with dark messages in the present,” Gjorgiev said. A reaction also came from the Jewish Community and the Holocaust Fund of the Jews of North Macedonia. “On Shabbat and on the first day of the observation of Passover, the top state officials from Bulgaria came to Bitola to open a culture centre named after one of the greatest collaborators with the fascists. We are disgusted by this act, which is a direct offense towards Jews and a threat over the human rights, as well as violation of the values of modern Europe,” they state from the Jewish Community.