A transcript of the official WMC-A statement Provocation, injustice and political agendas.

World Macedonian Congress - Australia press release..

Recently, it has been widely reported in the media that members of WMC-A’s Victorian branch were allegedly involved in an incident that has led to charges being laid by Victoria Police. As such, it is both inappropriate and prejudicial for WMC-A to comment on specific events that transpired during the day allegedly involving those persons.

Sadly, formal justice is often constrained by due process, and its willing substitute is almost always ‘trial by media’. 

During ‘trial by media’, the legal requirement to provide evidence of guilt often gives way to moral speculation about actions and motives, creating a volatile climate in which the media take the lead in defining who is guilty and who is innocent in the court of public opinion. 

Parties with vested interests in the outcome of the alleged incident are engaging segments of Australian media in order to advance a politically motivated agenda. There is often no way of determining how the media will choose to report cases, that is of course unless they are instructed to report in a particular way, releasing only selected exaggerated information - as is the case with the above mentioned alleged incident.

The strategic omissions geared towards distorting facts are glaringly obvious and blatantly geared towards a one sided retribution. For instance, there has been no mention in any of the news reports that:

• The alleged ‘victim’ is a known and registered member of the internationally condemned Greek fascist neo-Nazi party ‘Golden Dawn’.

• The alleged ‘victim’ has openly homophobic and racist views and has expressed them repeatedly on social media as part of a ‘personal mantra’ describing women as ''sluts'', Muslims as ''degenerates'' and saying all feminists are ugly.

• The alleged ‘victim’ has been allegedly charged for hate related, violent crimes in the past.

• The alleged ‘victim’ has been served with an Apprehended Violence Order for issuing death threats and threatening to rape 22 year old Cr Emilia Sterjova.

• The alleged ‘victim’ was in breach of that AVO on the day the alleged incident took place by being present at the council meeting

• The alleged ‘victim’ openly made himself known on the day of the alleged incident to family members of Cr Sterjova, who in turn expressed extreme distress at his presence.

• The alleged ‘victim’ openly taunted members of the Macedonian community allegedly calling them ‘monkeys’ and ‘gypsies’ as they walked past. 

• The alleged ‘victim’ openly taunted elderly members of the Macedonian community on the day in question, allegedly threatening to ‘crush their skulls’ when they left the meeting later that evening. 

• The alleged ‘victim’ openly invited numerous community members to accompany him to the venue in question to allegedly finish ‘discussions’ he’d started at the council building.

• When asked, members of Victoria police on duty disclosed the identity of the alleged victim, details of the AVO, that he had been placed on a Vic-Pol, violent-offenders ‘watch list’ and that they were taking his threats extremely seriously. 

• Victoria police ultimately did not act on the breech of the AVO by the alleged ‘victim’, even though several community members complained about his presence and demanded he be moved on.

• The alleged ‘victim’ was at one stage a member of the Liberal party but was booted out for bringing the party into disrepute for his extremist and violent views towards minorities, the LGBTIQ community and referring publically to a prominent Australian woman as a “lying f---ing cum guzzling slut.”

• The alleged ‘victim’ allegedly expressed public support on social media for the perpetrator of the recent Christchurch Massacre. 

Political bias is rife in the reporting of the alleged incident by Australian media, exposing an openly anti-Macedonian program and a poorly disguised State government sponsored, anti-municipal agenda. 

The political manoeuvring surrounding the alleged incident has also had negative implications for Cr Emilia Sterjova, who is now feeling the brunt of being the scapegoated councillor who removed ‘labour crony’ Simon Overland as CEO of Whittlesea. 

She was formally dismissed as a member of the Labour Party as a result of trumped up allegations and the alleged incident is being used as a form of character assassination to justify the target on hers and other elected councillors backs, with a view to dismissing all the democratically elected municipal representatives in favour of state government appointed administrators in the near future…. even though she had nothing to do with any of it. 

WMC-A’s concern is that the broader implications of an intensified media spotlight on the Macedonian issue once again allows for the Greek political machine’s ‘anti-Macedonian’ agenda to get a free ride in Australian media by inappropriately blaming racial tensions for the alleged incident. 

The reality is that the Macedonian community wants only to live peacefully and harmoniously in an Australian multi-cultural society where Macedonian identity and Macedonian’s Human Rights are respected and acknowledged. Racial tensions are not an aspirational mindset for the Macedonian community. It is something that Macedonians throughout the world wish was just a joke but it is unfortunately our sad reality as a people.

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