For May 17, the largest opposition Party, SDSM called non-partisan antigovernment protest supported by a wide coalition of civic organizations and movements. The protest was scheduled to start at 14:00h. On that day, thirteenth since the start of the May 5th protests, part of the citizens in #Protestiram rallied first in front of the Primary Court Skopje 1 – Skopje to support the arrested activists, still in jail custody.
At the Court, #Protestiram took one of the boulevard lanes and from there headed towards the Government, walking side by side with the student march organized by the Student Plenum. Self-organized citizens, in protest of the central heating supply system Toplifikacija, joined the groups.
Protesters marched onto the government jointly, shouting:
“Since the 5th and until we win.”
„Who are we?” -The citizens! What do we want? – Freedom! When? -Now.
#Protestiram arrived in front of the Government according to plan, five minutes before the start of the protests at 14:00h. The timing was symbolical, meaning, in the last minute, to welcome in this way the political parties to the street and in the name of all those who have been protesting since May 5 seeking justice in public protest for years.
Over 50.000 citizens protested that day. Representatives of Student Plenum, citizens’ organizations, journalists and euro-parliamentarians addressed the crowd with powerful speeches. Zoran Zaev, the leader of SDSM had the final word. He repeated the demands for Gruevski’s (the prime minister) resignation, formation of technical government and other future plans. Together with some of the protesters he remained camping infront of the Government, in protest, until the government resigns.
At 18:00h., #Protestiram met at the usual rallying spot, the corner of boulevard Sv. Kliment Ohridski and reminded of the year-long struggle, the need for the resistance to grow further to achieve systemic changes after the fall of Gruevski.
We will endure and continue #everyday at 6pm.