The Bulgarian-Macedonian dispute is also continued overseas, to Albania. Another rumour arises over the possible separation of two regions in Albania – Golo Bardo (Gollobordë) and Gora, into separate cities. The Bulgarian minority, identified by the Parliament in Tirana in 2017, is showing their enthusiastic interest in these areas.
However, the organizations close to Skopje claim that the population living in these areas is Macedonian. The citizens demand an urgent meeting with Bulgarian President Rumen Radev.
The Bulgarian community in Albania lives in the provinces of Mala Prespa, Golo Bardo and Gora. There are more than ten thousand Bulgarian living there, and everyone was officially recognized as a minority by the Albanian Parliament in 2017. According to experts, they have been living there for the past centuries.
Recently, it was expected that Golo Bardo and Gora areas would be divided again into two separate cities, allowing the Bulgarian population to attract more investments easily. prove their Bulgarian origin and seek Bulgaria’s help. It will also demonstrate the heritage of Bulgaria.
The head of the organization living in Golo Bardo, Hadji Pirushi, commented, “In our territory – every road is a dirt road; there is not even a single asphalt road in our region. It is almost impossible for others to enter Golo Bardo. In municipalities, we don’t have even one person among our people. In addition, our territory doesn’t have a single deputy.
Professor “Spas Tashev” from the Bulgarian Academy of Science (BAS) said, “In the past days, Golo Bardo was an independent city. On the birth certificate of every individual, it was written that the person was born here. There were no other people there except Bulgarians. It was effortless to establish the Bulgarian origin of the candidate in question. But now we lose all proof since the cities there have been dissolved with each other. Now it is almost impossible for the people living in Golo Bardo to prove their origin based on their birth certificate”.
The census is coming up in Albania, and parallel movement with the issue of the separation of municipalities in October this year. But it was threatened by the Macedonian organizations living there already having their own MP.
A man named Vasil Sterovski claims that there are only Macedonians and not Bulgarians in Albania and that Sofia is “Bulgarianizing” Tirana. Sterovski wants to clarify that the cities of Golo Bardo and Gora have a Macedonian population.
Swarovski also shared a post on his social media in which he wrote that Bulgaria’s efforts are manipulating its membership in the EU to deny and incorporate the Macedonians in Albania to create a Bulgarian minority in the places where Macedonians live are unbearable to us. Today, Bulgaria is engaging with aggression to take Albania that belongs to the Macedonians residing there.”
Hadji Pirushi replied to Sterovski; he said,” what kind of nationality is this? Our Constitution states that every person should say who they are. Please ignore what these people say; we have nothing to do with Macedonians.”
Macedonian propaganda has been active for many years in Mala Prespa, Golo Bardo and Gora. Bulgaria needs to make more efforts for the minorities living there.