Skopje – June 20, 2023
On the 20th of June 2023, the director of the Intelligence Agency, Erolld Musliu, participated at the Conference “Building societal resilience towards the harmful effects of disinformation in the Republic of North Macedonia”, organized in partnership between the Presidential Center for Political Education (PCPO) and the Metamorphosis Foundation, supported by the Kingdom of the Netherlands through the project Western Balkans Anti-Disinformation Hub, implemented by the Metamorphosis Foundation.
Musliu emphasized that the current security challenges North Macedonia is facing are the hybrid strategies developed by authoritarian countries, specifying the tools they have been using. He pointed out that the need to build resilience is one of the preventive measures, yet closer cooperation and exchange on a political, intelligence and military level among NATO allies is crucial.
The director of the Intelligence Agency elaborated on the hybrid propaganda strategies of Russia and China. By using its diplomatic capacities in the region and numerous tools, Russia creates opposed narratives within societies and among states as well, via “windows of opportunities” - the open issues in the region and the slow-paced Euro-Atlantic integrations. He also referred to the Chinese propaganda strategy in the Western Balkans that is based on the alleged superiority of the alternative model for economic development through cooperation with China. He highlighted that through influence in the media space, the Chinese propaganda aims at creating a perception of the rearrangement of the political order, which is characterized by an accelerated transfer of political and economic power from West to East, and imposing the need for loyalty on small countries to more centers of power in “the new world order”.
Lastly, Musliu listed the challenges that the Republic of North Macedonia will be facing in the following period – 2023/2024. He emphasized that our country will be a target of disinformation propaganda for the constitutional amendments, the church issues and the 2024 elections, underlining that disinformation campaigns are a state-organized and targeted process aimed at manipulating the public opinion and building up pressure on decision-makers.
The link of the event: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E85yaPG5SA0