On the occasion of the 28th birthday of the Army of the Republic of North Macedonia, in an appropriate manner and by respecting the measures of the protocol of the Commission for Protection from Infectious Diseases for marking public holidays in conditions of “Covid 19” at the military stadium in Skopje City park 18th August – Army Day was marked.
The President of the Republic of North Macedonia and Supreme Commander of the Army, Stevo Pendarovski, the Minister of Defense Radmila Shekerinska and the Chief of General Staff, Lieutenant General Vasko Gjurchinovski addressed the ceremony.
President Pendarovski awarded the highest military recognition “Order of Military Merit” for the achieved results in the operation of the Military-Medical Support Battalion, the 3rd Infantry Battalion of the 1st Infantry Brigade. He also awarded with the same medal the Office for Defense Cooperation of the United States for their continuous assistance and support in the process of strengthening the capacities of the Army.
In his speech, the Chief of General Staff, emphasized that this is the first year we celebrate the Army birthday as a full NATO member, of which we are especially proud. He expressed his gratitude, recognition and respect to all, former and active military and civilian personnel of the Army and Ministry of Defense , who through their hard work contributed to the building, development and integration of the Army in NATO.
Addressing the members of the Army, General Gjurchinovski also said: “Today, I can proudly say that we have achieved a lot, but we still have a lot to do. We have provided the necessary dignified working conditions for all of you, so that you can work even more focused in achieving our goals, which are always at the service of the citizens. We are the only ones with a continuous and the greatest trust and support of our citizens, for which I am especially proud of all of you. Their trust and the support are recognition of our commitment and professionalism, based on morality and ethics in our work, but also an obligation to continue on the right path.”
He told the citizens that the Army is there for each of them and it is a true friend and a sincere ally who will never betray them.
Addressing the audience, Minister of Defense Radmila Shekerinska said: “Thirty years of hope and anticipation have turned into results. We became the 30th member of the Alliance and part of the most powerful military-political alliance today.”
The President and Supreme Commander of the Army, Stevo Pendarovski in his address stressed that full NATO membership would not have been possible without the continuous efforts and professional attitude of all members of the Army, without the people who are always the main dynamic force of the integration process. Our membership is a result of thorough defense reforms, the personal commitment of courageous women and men in our Armed Forces, and their participation in risky peacekeeping missions around the world.
At the same time, he emphasized that the responsibility of NATO membership raises to a much higher level the responsibility of the Army. Since March this year, our uniform and name have been an integral part of this global alliance. Therefore, we must continue to invest in defense, modernize and equip the Army, and for that you will always have my personal support.
The celebration of the Army Day in the General Staff and the subordinate commands and units took place in accordance with the measures and recommendations of the Commission for Protection against Infectious Diseases to prevent the spread of the epidemic caused by Covid 19, while the central ceremony was attended by a reduced number of participants and a protocol for health and safety organization and movement, with distance and protection provided.