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Macedonia: Independent Daily Publisher Found Dead

Nikola Mladenov (1964-2013)

Nikola Mladenov (1964-2013): “We want a society of free people, they want a bunch of spineless sycophants. There's no way to compromise!”

The body of Nikola Mladenov, publisher and editor of the independent Fokus daily and weekly, was extracted from the wreck of his car found near the highway at the entrance to Skopje on March 27.

According to news reports, Mladenov died over 12 hours earlier, and was found by geo-locating his mobile phone after the family reported him missing. Mladenov's newspapers often examined political corruption and were Macedonia's last printed media outlets openly critical of the government. The funeral is today, while the fans of Mladenov's work were lighting candles [mk] on Skopje's Stone Bridge during the night. Social media users (#НиколаМладенов) expressed dismay and lamented the state of freedom of speech in Macedonia by sharing his quotes, links to reprints of his 2011 article “The Price of Freedom” [mk], his last column [mk] (published Friday, on the controversies of this Sunday's local elections) and tributes [mk, mk] from colleagues.

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