Swiss National Day celebrated in Skopje

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Local news, 26.07.2019

Over 200 guests enjoyed the traditional Swiss cuisine and the authentic alphorn and yodeling performance at the celebration.

Ambassador Suter giving welcoming remarks on the celebration of the Swiss National Day in North Macedonia © TOMISLAY_GEORGIEV

The Swiss Embassy in North Macedonia hosted yesterday its annual National Day celebration. The event was attended by a large number of distinguished guests, including parliament and government leaders, members of the diplomatic corps, representatives of international organizations, guests from the business sector, civil society and media.

Speaking on the occasion, Ambassador Suter referred to the 25th anniversary of the establishment of formal diplomatic relations between Switzerland and North Macedonia, emphasizing that Switzerland is one of North Macedonia’s close friends and largest bilateral cooperation partners. “I am convinced that as long as we share a common vision of the future, Switzerland will continue to support North Macedonia’s citizens as they work to build a better future for their country.”

Acknowledging significant foreign policy achievements of the country - solving the name issue and receiving the invitation to join NATO - she also highlighted the importance of focusing efforts on the domestic reforms. “We often say that elected leaders need to have the courage to implement reforms. But what they truly need is the will and the uncompromising integrity to do so. Expectations are high, and rightly so. I can only appeal to central and local government representatives and members of the parliament to work relentlessly in the interest of the citizens, and encourage citizens to hold elected officials fully accountable.”

Ambassador Suter concluded her remarks by highlighting the importance of having a common vision for the future of the country, which should go beyond questions such as NATO membership and EU accession. “It should be based on a set of common values, shared throughout the society, from the government to the opposition, from the private sector to the civil society. Such a common vision would also give much-needed guidance to the youth, who is wondering where to invest its energy and creativity – at home here in North Macedonia, or abroad.”

At the celebration, guests relished traditional Swiss cuisine and wine, while enjoying the music performed by the Swiss musician on traditional alphorn and yodeling, Franziska Raaflaub, accompanied by the professional accordionist Gyorgi Spasov from North Macedonia living in Switzerland.