Македония в конце XIX-начале ХХ века — яблоко раздора на Балканах

Александр Николаевич Сквозников






Alexander Nikolaevich Skvoznikov



The events of 1990s in Yugoslavia and its disintegration revived the definition of the Balkans as the «powder magazine of Europe». Moreover, many problems that caused the Yugoslavian crisis are rooted in the past, and the Macedonian question, which is still a pressing issue among Greece, Serbia, Bulgaria and Albania, is among them.


The Macedonian question, risen in the European politics for the first time in the period of the Eastern crises of 1875-1878, belongs to such problems of the area of the Balkans that have remained rather baffling to any simple explanation and, — up to our own day, — the stumbling block in the mutual relations among Bulgaria, Greece, Republic of Macedonia, Serbia, and, most recently, Albania.


In the various periods of history the Macedonian question did not have the same meaning and implications — with the changing circumstances some of its aspects would appear brought to the forefront, while the other ones fell back into the shadow.


Still, we find it possible to point out the following as its principle aspects:


1) the problem of the origin, ethno genesis and national identification and self-identification of the Slav population of Macedonia; 2) the struggle of the population, mostly its Slav section, of Macedonia for the national liberation against the oppression in the Ottoman empire in the late XIX — early XX century; 3)most fierce ethno-confessional strife among Bulgaria, Greece, Serbia and Rumania, who had claims for parts of Macedonian territory, in the late XIX — early XX century; 4)the policies of the Great Powers in relation to Macedonia as the most strategically important area in the Balkans.


Russia trying to realise her Balkan policy goals was an active participant in the attempts to settling the Macedonian question. She remained such from the moment that question first rose up till the outbreak of the Balkan Wars of 1912-1913 that led to the partition of Macedonia’s territory among Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia.


The Macedonian question in the end of the XIX — early XX century was a complicated knot of several problems connected with the national liberation movement of the Slavic Macedonian population against the Turkish rule, territorial controversies among the Balkan states, and the politics of the Great Powers in the Balkans, where Russia played a major role.


The research into the policy of the European Powers and Balkan states in the early XX century in the Macedonian question (which itself is not





sufficiently studied so far) is of great importance for deeper analysis and interpretation of the events in Macedonia and the Balkans after 1913.


Our monography is devoted to complex studying on the basis of the archival documents and published sources of the foreign policy of European Powers and Balkan states in the Macedonian question during its aggravation in the end of the XIX — early XX century.


The significant attention in work is given to consideration of foreign policy of the Russian empire in relation to the Macedonian question in the end of the XIX — early XX century. It can also be specified as the problem of the development of the policy in St. Petersburg and realization in 1903-1908 years Murzsteg program reforms for Christian population of the Macedonian vilayets (areas) of the Ottoman Empire (administrative, judicial, financial change), which were in their essence elaborated according to the Austro-Russian agreement of 1903 with the participation of the other Great Powers. In the monography the various variants of the possible decision Macedonian problem offered by the Russian diplomacy in the end XIX — beginning XX centuries are considered. And also is considered the most fierce ethno-confessional strife among of the Balkan states (Bulgaria, Serbia, Greece and Romania) for prevalence in Macedonian lands in the end of the XIX—early XX century.



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