Lake Ohrid in Struga
Last Monday we ended up in Struga – a beautiful small sleepy city in the south of Macedonia, situated on a stunning huge mountain lake surrounded by high, still snow covered mountains. But this place is not only known as one of the most wonderufl spots in Macedonia, but for its High School. Or let’s say – the ethnical conflicts between Macedonian and Albanian pupils there.
About 25 percent of the two million Macedonian citizens are Albanians. In the Struga municipality, which is directly on the border to Albania, Albanians are even the majority. So according to the constitution and election results the mayor is Albanian, first language is Albanian and in front of the town hall you will find both flags: The Macedonian sun and the black hawk of Albania.
In Struga people life together peacefully – even so when Macedonia was close to an ethnical civil war in the year 2001. But for some reasons their kids, coming together the only high school of the municipality – there are fights between the boys of two ethnicities in the only high school of the city. And always before elections, when the parties try to attract voice mostly of “their own people”, suddenly media starts to report about violence in Stuga´s school and kids end up in hospital.
Niko Nestor High School in Struga
Anna and me have been at this school for five days in the time between the two rounds of presidential and local elections. We were talking to pupils and trying to understand what is going on there.
PS: At the moment we are in Pristina (Kosovo). We planned to go back to Belgrad, but unfortunately it’s not possible to cross a border to Serbia from here – so back to Skopje and then up to Belgrad.