World Leaders Receive Macedonia’s Desire for Country’s Name Change


World leaders congratulated on Saturday the Macedonian Parliament vote to endorse the constitutional changes regarding the name of the country, which will put Prespa Agreement in force and finally open the Euro-Atlantic path to Macedonia.

“This is a significant decision for Macedonia, but also for the entire region,” declared Albanian President Ilir Meta, adding that Albania will keep supporting Macedonia on its path.

Matthew Nimetz, the United Nations mediator in the country name negotiations between Skopje and Athens, welcomed the final steps taken by the Macedonian Parliament towards implementing the Prespa Agreement.

“This historic agreement between two neighbors opens the door to a new relationship between them and to a firmer basis for peace and security in the Balkans,” said Nimetz in a written statement.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas expressed in a written statement his wish that the Greek Parliament would approve the Prespa Agreement and for the Republic of North Macedonia to soon join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and start the European Union accession talks.

Meanwhile, the spokesman for the Secretary General of the Council of Europe Thorbjorn Jagland tweeted that the Secretary General welcomes the decision of the Macedonian Parliament and sees it as an important contribution towards stability of the region.

Late Friday after the Macedonian Parliament voted in favor of the constitutional changes, former Greek foreign minister Nikos Kotzias welcomed the endorsement of the Prespa Agreement, saying “history should be a school and not a prison.”

“North Macedonia welcome in our lives,” tweeted Kotzias.

Under the Prespa Agreement signed on June 17, 2018, the amendments to Macedonia’s constitution will not enter into force and will have no value if Greece doesn’t ratify this agreement and NATO accession Protocol.

Macedonia is formally called the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) by the United Nations. Macedonia is also the name of a northern province in Greece. Athens has been worried that the use of the same name by the neighboring state could lead to territorial claims.

On June 17 last year, Macedonia and Greece signed the Prespa Agreement to resolve a decades-old name dispute. Under the deal, the official name of the country will become the Republic of North Macedonia. Enditem.

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