SKOPJE, Macedonia — Macedonia’s government late Wednesday easily survived a no-confidence motion initiated by the conservative opposition, which accused it of failing to control corruption or halt economic stagnation.
In a vote just before midnight, all 62 lawmakers from the left-led governing coalition in the 120-seat parliament rejected the motion and 40 opposition lawmakers backed it.
The conservative VMRO-DPMNE party claimed that the 11-month-old government has turned the country’s institutions and judiciary to its own benefit.
Prime Minister Zoran Zaev countered that his government inherited significant problems from VMRO-DPMNE, which ruled Macedonia during 2006-2016.
Struggling to boost an $11 billion economy after a decade of flat growth, Macedonia has been rattled by successive political crises, marked by intense rivalry between the conservatives and Zaev’s Social Democrats.
During Wednesday’s 11-hour debate, VMRO-DPMNE’s parliamentary coordinator Dragan Danev alleged that Zaev leads “the most incompetent … and certainly the most criminal government” in Macedonia’s history.
Zaev is trying to resolve a long-standing dispute with neighbor Greece over the former Yugoslav republic’s name. Negotiations resume Thursday when the foreign ministers of the two countries meet at the lakeside resort of Ohrid.