Kiro Gligorov

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Kiro Gligorov
Киро Глигоров
Kiro Gligorov.jpg
1st President of Macedonia
In office
27 January 1991 – 19 November 1999
Prime MinisterNikola Kljusev
Branko Crvenkovski
Ljubčo Georgievski
Vice PresidentLjubčo Georgievski (1991)[1]
Preceded byVladimir Mitkov (as President of the SR Macedonia)
Succeeded byBoris Trajkovski
Personal details
Born(1917-05-03)3 May 1917
Štip, Bulgarian-occupied Serbia (now North Macedonia)
Died1 January 2012(2012-01-01) (aged 94)
Skopje, Macedonia
Political partyLCM/Independent[2]
Spouse(s)Nada Misheva (1943–2009; her death)

Kiro Gligorov (Macedonian: Киро Глигоров, pronounced [ˈkirɔ ˈɡliɡɔrɔf] (About this soundlisten); May 3, 1917 – January 1, 2012) was the first President of the Republic of Macedonia (now North Macedonia), serving from 1991 to 1999. He held various high positions in the political establishment of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, including as Secretary of State for Finance in the Federal Executive Council, a member of the Yugoslav Presidency, as well as President of the Assembly of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia from May 15, 1974 to May 15, 1978.

Early life[edit]

Born in Štip, Kingdom of Serbia (then occupied by Bulgaria),[3] Gligorov later graduated from the University of Belgrade's Law School. After the defeat of Yugoslavia in 1941, he returned to Skopje (then annexed by Bulgaria), where Gligorov worked as a lawyer until 1943. In 1942, Gligorov was arrested by the Bulgarian police for reporting that he was a pro-Serbian communist. He was released on the orders of Skopje Mayor Spiro Kitinchev, who guaranteed for him as a trustworthy Bulgarian. Afterwards he participated in the National Liberation War of Macedonia as a secretary of the Initiative committee for the organization of the Antifascist Assembly of the National Liberation of Macedonia (ASNOM) and a finance commissioner in the Presidium of ASNOM.[4] He served as Finance Minister of Yugoslavia from 1962 to 1967.

After the promotion of parliamentary democracy in the country in 1990, he became the first democratically elected president of the Socialist Republic of Macedonia on January 27, 1991. On April 16, 1991, the parliament adopted the constitutional amendment for removing the "Socialist" adjective from the official name of the country, and on June 7 the same year, the new name Republic of Macedonia was officially established, hence Gligorov continued his presidency as the President of the Republic of Macedonia.[5]

He served for two terms, from January 27, 1991, to November 19, 1999. He was re-elected for his second term in office on November 19, 1994. He led his country to independence proclaimed after the referendum held on September 8, 1991, and tried to keep it out of the Yugoslav wars, a task made difficult by disputes with the Serbia and Montenegro, Albania, Bulgaria and Greece who all faced separate issues with the country.[citation needed]

Assassination attempt[edit]

Assassination attempt

On October 3, 1995, Gligorov was the target of a car bomb assassination attempt in Skopje. While on route from his residence to his office, the vehicle carrying Gligorov was blown up by an explosion from a parked vehicle, killing his driver and injuring several passers-by. Gligorov was seriously injured above his right eye and was immediately conveyed to the hospital.[6]

Since the incident there have been no suspects brought to book and no progress has been made in the investigation of the case. However, there have been short-lived speculations as to who could be the culprits. Shortly after bombing, the Minister of Internal Affairs Ljubomir Frčkovski publicly claimed that "a powerful multinational company from a neighbouring country" was behind the assassination attempt,[7] with the Macedonian media pointing at the Bulgarian Multigroup and the Yugoslav KOS as possible suspects.[7] During a meeting between Multigroup head Iliya Pavlov and Gligorov in Ohrid, Pavlov assured Gligorov that his organisation was not involved.[7] All investigations were futile.[7]

Gligorov was incapacitated until November 17, 1995. He was permanently blind in one eye as a result. Stojan Andov was acting president during Gligorov's recuperation.[citation needed]

The election for Gligorov's successor took place only a few days before the end of his term.


Gligorov died at the age of 94 in the early hours of January 1, 2012, in his sleep.[8][9] At his own request, the funeral was private with only his closest family in attendance. He was buried in Butel Municipality, Skopje.[10]

Kiro was the father of Vladimir Gligorov, a refounder of the Democratic Party in Serbia.

Personal life[edit]

In October 1943, Gligorov married Nada Misheva (6 January 1920 – 26 June 2009)[11][12] and had one son and two daughters.


  • Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Order of the Yugoslavian Great Star Rib.png Order of the Yugoslav Star with Sash [13]
  • Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Order of the brotherhood and unity with golden wreath Rib.png Order of Brotherhood and Unity with golden wreath
  • Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Order of Labour with the red flag RIB.gif Order of Labours with red flag[14]
  • Russia 65 ann WW2 ribbon.jpg Jubilee Medal "65 Years of Victory in the Great Patriotic War 1941–1945[15]


  1. ^ Bideleux, Robert; Jeffries, Ian (2007-01-24). The Balkans: A Post-Communist History. ISBN 9781134583287.
  2. ^ Sabrina P. Ramet et al., Building Democracy in the Yugoslav Successor States: Accomplishments, Setbacks, and Challenges since 1990, Cambridge University Press, 2017, ISBN 1107180740, p. 290.
  3. ^ The European powers in the First World War: an encyclopedia, Spencer Tucker, Laura Matysek Wood, Taylor & Francis, 1996, ISBN 0-8153-0399-8, p. 150.
  4. ^ Interview, "Utrinski vesnik" daily newspaper, issue 1497, August 31, 2006 Skopje, Republic of Macedonia Archived May 30, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ Gligorov became president on January 27, 1991, when the official name of the country was still Socialist Republic of Macedonia -On This Day - Macedonian Information Agency Archived 2008-01-25 at the Wayback Machine, see: 1991: The official change of the state's name (in Macedonian)
  6. ^ Osservatorio Balcani e Caucaso
  7. ^ a b c d "11th anniversary of assassination attempt on Gligorov, perpetrators unknown". MRT. 2006-10-03. Archived from the original on 2007-09-30. Retrieved 2006-10-22.
  8. ^ Former Macedonian president Kiro Gligorov dies[permanent dead link],, 2 January 2012
  9. ^
  10. ^ "Погребан претседателот Глигоров" (in Macedonian). 3 January 2012. Retrieved 3 January 2012.
  11. ^[permanent dead link]
  12. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2017-10-11. Retrieved 2017-10-10.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^[permanent dead link]

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Vladimir Mitkov
President of the SR Macedonia
Succeeded by
Post abolished
(himself as President of the Republic of Macedonia)
Preceded by
post created
(himself as President of the SR Macedonia)
President of the Republic of Macedonia
Succeeded by
Boris Trajkovski