Last week, on 1-2 February 2010, a delegation from the Australian Macedonian Human Rights Committee visited Canberra for a number of important meetings with Federal MPs and the Ambassador of the Republic of Macedonia to Australia. The visit was the first in series of visits planned for 2010 and carries on from several meetings held in Canberra in 2009.
The delegation, led by Jason Kambovski and David Vitkov, met individually with members of the Australia-Macedonia Parliamentary Friendship Group, the Honourable Member for Corangamite, Mr Darren Cheeseman, and the Honourable Member for Cowan, Mr Luke Simpkins. A number of important issues pertaining to Australian-Macedonian relations were discussed, including a future visit by the Friendship Group to the Republic of Macedonia. The idea of the visit, likely take place after the next federal election, was well received by both MPs who said that they looked forward to being part of the delegation.
Mr Cheeseman and Mr Simpkins also welcomed the initiative of the AMHRC to host a National Political Conference on 20 March 2010 in Melbourne. The conference, to be attended by representatives from various states and territories in Australia, will discuss ways and means to unify and improve the Macedonian community?s advocacy work across the country in relation to state and federal MPs. The conference will not just be about gaining support for the recognition of the Republic of Macedonia, but also for the purpose of gaining for our community respect and equitable treatment in general. The MPs noted that the event would be an important step for the Macedonian community in Australia and offered their assistance in making the event a success.
The AMHRC delegation also visited the Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia and met with the Ambassador, His Excellency, Mr Pero Stojanovski. A number of important community issues of mutual interest were discussed and the Ambassador was briefed on the AMHRC?s upcoming initiatives. Mr Stojanovski also confirmed his strong support for the National Political Conference.