The Ministry of Justice of North Macedonia said it is seeking the extradition from Hungary of the politician Nikola Gruevski, who served as the country’s prime minister for years and who fled North Macedonia in 2018, reported Euractiv, a European political news site.
Nikola Gruevski was granted political asylum in Hungary in November 2018, after he claimed that he was persecuted by the North Macedonian government, headed at the time by Zoran Zaev. North Macedonia sent an extradition request to Hungary in 2018 and 2019, which included all cases for which proceedings were underway against Gruevski, stated the Ministry.
The former prime minister’s claims were dismissed by the Macedonian government, and now they want Gruevski to serve several prison terms amounting to more than 10 years.
According to Euractiv, the politician has two final judgements against him, one of which is first degree, plus there are several ongoing court cases as well.
As Hungary Today reported earlier, Gruevski fled to Budapest in 2018 to avoid a two-year prison sentence for buying a luxury limousine – with the alleged help of the Hungarian government before his detention – which was only for two years at the time. In April this year, the politician was also sentenced to seven years for embezzling 1.3 million euros in donations to his party.
Gruevski was prime minister and leader of the VMRO-DPMNE party in North Macedonia from 2006 until January 2016. In May of that year, the politician was sentenced to two years because of charges of corruption. However, he did not turn up to serve the sentence; instead, he fled the country and ended up in Hungary.
Featured photo: MTI/Máthé Zoltán