Macedonia - Election 2004
On February 26, 2004 President Trajkovski died in a plane crash in Bosnia. Presidential elections were held April 14 and 28, 2004. Then-Prime Minister Branko Crvenkovski won the second round and was inaugurated President on May 12, 2004. The parliament confirmed Hari Kostov, former Interior Minister, as Prime Minister June 2, 2004, but Kostov resigned on November 15 of the same year. On December 17, 2004, former Defense Minister Vlado Buckovski was confirmed by parliament as Prime Minister, maintaining the coalition with the ethnic Albanian Democratic Union for Integration (DUI) and the Liberal-Democratic (LDP) parties.
With international assistance, the SDSM-DUI-LDP governing coalition completed the legislative implementation of the Ohrid Framework Agreement, which was a precondition for Macedonia's integration into Euro-Atlantic institutions. A November 7, 2004 referendum opposing the law on new municipal organization failed, freeing the way for the government to complete Framework Agreement implementation. Local elections were held in March-April 2005 under a new territorial reorganization plan that consolidated the overall number of Macedonia's municipalities and created a number of ethnically-mixed municipalities in which ethnic Albanian populations were dominant. The process of decentralization began in the new municipalities in July 2005 and is continuing.
On 29 March 2006, the Assembly of the Republic of Macedonia adopted the Electoral Code. The Electoral Code incorporated OSCE recommendations and the recommendations of domestic observers by which the modern European standards on elections had been implemented in Macedonian legislation, and the best practices and solutions for conduct of elections had been incorporated. 185. On 14 April 2006, the Assembly appointed the members of the State Election Commission. According to the Electoral Code, the State Election Commission of the Republic of Macedonia was the professional single body in charge of implementing election related activities within the territory of the Republic of Macedonia.
The July 2006 parliamentary elections resulted in a VMRO-DPMNE-led government under Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski assuming power, in coalition with DPA, NSDP, and several smaller parties. The new government, which was confirmed in office by a parliamentary vote on August 26, 2006, stated its commitment to completing Framework Agreement implementation and reaffirmed its commitment to pursuing NATO and EU membership.
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