Name negotiations: Solution drifts away as FYROM President Ivanov vetos “erga omnes”

31 May 2018
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The refusal of the President of the FYROM (Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) Gjorge Ivanov to accept a solution in terms of erga omnes (the new name to apply for every use inside and outside the country) explains the hesitation both FYROM’s PM Zoran Zaev and the Greek PM Alexis Tsipras demonstrated and makes the prospects of a solution drift away.

Earlier this week the Greek FM Nikos Kotzias spoke publicly about a compromise that has been reached, which is still to be approved by the two Prime Ministers of Greece and FYROM. However, Athens kept a cautious attitude, suggesting that there is still a way to go.

Zoran Zaev also moved on the same line. On the other hand, however, FYROM’s Prime Minister wished to “sell” to his audience an “agreement in principle”. He mentioned that “Greece will send a letter to NATO, so that FYROM will receive an invitation to join the Alliance”. Revealed that the “Macedonian” language and identity of the country’s citizens “have already been ensured by the planned agreement with Greece” and that he “longs for a ‘Macedonia’, in which citizens will be free from prejudices and fears of the past”.

His attitude has sparked the reaction of the Greek government, which stated that “there is no agreement”. In the announcement, the Prime Minister’s Office clarifies that “the position of the Greek government is always clear: A prerequisite for the solution and the integration of FYROM in NATO and the EU is the agreement on a composite name with a geographical position values, effective against of all, which also requires constitutional revision”.

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