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sensitive controversial issues in the post-confl ict countries

The Population census is the most comprehensive source of detailed information about the country’s demographic, economic and social characteristics, comparable over time and dependable across countries, from micro-levels, such as family and neighborhood, to macro levels of communities and other social structures. Many of the national censuses include questions on ethnic, racial, linguistic, religious lines, etc. A study conducted by Ann Morning at in 2008 found that 63% of 141 countries which were studied have enumerated their populations by race, ethnicity, indigeneity or nationality between 1995 and 2004.1 Measuring ethnic, racial, linguistic, religious composition of a country is necessary to highlight and address roadblocks to equal opportunity and social justice. On the other hand, measuring this kind of personal characteristics may touch sensitive issues in the post ethnic-confl ict countries because results can directly aff ect the distribution of power and the allocation of public goods. The Republic of Macedonia is a multiethnic and multi-confessional country. In the late 1990s and the beginning of 2000s, inter-ethnic violence has jeopardized peaceful 1 Morning, A. (2008). Ethnic Classifi cation in Global Perspective: A Crossnational Survey of the 2000 Census Round. Population Research and Policy Review, 27, 239–272. 365 coexistence between largest ethnic groups Macedonians and Albanians. In the fi rst decade of its independence the country witnessed increasing mobilization and mounting injustices of the Albanian community related to their political status, and diff erences between the non-Macedonian community and the Macedonian majority about the nature of the state and the role of the Albanians in it.2 A decade aft er its independence, the security crisis of the fi rst half of 2001 brought the country to the brink of civil war. The Ohrid Framework Agreement (OFA), signed on 13 August 2001, ended Macedonia’s armed confl ict between Albanian rebels and Macedonian security forces. The country is today considered to be a stabilized post-confl ict.3 Since its independence in September 1991, four population censuses (1991, 1994, 2002 and 2011) were conducted in the Republic of Macedonia, of which only two (1994 and 2002) have been successful. This paper aims to investigate how census politics has been used as a political device in the country and how the census process has engendered tensions.