Europe

Macedonian president warns of Albanian threat to sovereignty

Macedonia's president has appealed to international leaders to condemn demands by minority ethnic Albanians for enhanced constitutional rights that he says threaten his country's very existence.

President Gjorge Ivanov wrote in a letter released Tuesday that a common platform three of his country's ethnic Albanian parties signed in Albania last month endangers Macedonia's sovereignty and independence.

Macedonia is in a deepening political crisis, sparked by a wiretap scandal two years ago that put the two main political parties at each other's throats.

An internationally brokered attempt to ease tensions through an early election in December left neither party with the support to govern alone.

The three parties want Albanian designated as Macedonia's second official language as a condition for joining any coalition government.

Albanians form about one-fourth of Macedonia's population.