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Spirit 06-28-2018 12:32 AM

Skopje, 27 June 2018 (MIA) - Ambassador Dimitris Yannakakis said Wednesday that Greece supports Macedonia in EU and NATO based on the Prespa agreement, adding that everything is now in the hands of member-states.
"This country aspires to become a member of the EU and NATO. Based on the Prespa agreement, Greece supports these efforts but the accession does not depend solely on Greece, but on all member-states of EU and NATO," Ambassador Yannakakis told the 98. Rose-Roth seminar in the Parliament.
He referred to the "historic" name agreement, which has put bilateral relations on new ground.
"A positive outcome of the referendum and the constitutional revision will enable Greece to ratify the NATO accession protocol of the Republic of North Macedonia, along with the Prespa agreement, which will then fully enter into force," added Yannakakis.
He stressed that the name agreement was not easy for both sides, reached after difficult negotiations that covered many sensitive issues.
"These issues aroused criticism in both countries. The Greek government strongly believes that the agreement will leave behind the difficult period and lead to the development of strong, deep and fruitful relations between the two countries," said the Greek Ambassador.
Regarding NATO, he said Greece is truly interested in enhancing security in Southeast Europe and beyond.
"Other than the name issue, Greece and FYROM or North Macedonia, as we hope to call the country in the coming months, had no major problems," added Yannakakis.
According to him, Greece wants a stable and prosperous neighbor, secure within its borders, a close friend to work with in the fields of trade and economic exchange. ik/17:01

The Greeks have already got their get out of jail free card. All they have to do is say and they are saying it already “Well it’s not just up to us, all the member states have to agree. Don’t blame us if you don’t get in, we are supporting you as per the agreement but it’s not our fault if another member vetoes your entry”.
This is clear as daylight yet the Neanderthals in the Republic are either to blind or to stupid, to ignorant or to much wishful thinking.
An apt proverb is “Beware Greeks bearing gifts”

Pelagonija 06-28-2018 01:38 AM

U know what pisses me off, they keep on referring to the name change, it’s not a name change, it a name, identity and number plates change..

Risto the Great 06-28-2018 03:14 AM

It's nothing. Macedonians know who they are. C'mon!

Vangelovski 06-28-2018 04:10 AM

[QUOTE=Gocka;174740] Based on anything we know about Macedonia and Macedonians can anyone say with a straight face that we could do it in a best case scenario? [/QUOTE]
Can anyone even say the word Macedonia with a straight face anymore?

Risto the Great 06-28-2018 06:15 AM

You need a homosexual face for most things nowadays. So, no.

Pelagonija 06-28-2018 07:17 AM

SDSM going after big George.


Soldier of Macedon 06-28-2018 08:36 AM

[QUOTE=Pelagonija;174753]SDSM going after big George.

Pelagonija, please post the actual article along with the link.
[QUOTE]СДСМ: Иванов крие за што ги троши парите на граѓаните, 28 јуни, 2018

Со одбивањето на алатката за транспарентно, отчетно и одговорно владеење Ѓорге Иванов им го ускратува правото на граѓаните редовно, точно, објективно и транспарентно да бидат информирани за трошоците од неговото работење, смета СДСМ. Според владејачката партија, Иванов со тоа покажува непочитување кон граѓаните. „Очигледно за Иванов граѓаните не се важни и со одбивањето на алатката за транспаретност крие за што ги троши нивните пари. Интересите на граѓаните и државата треба да бидат на прво место за секого. Владата предводена од СДСМ затоа и ја донесе оваа алатка за транспарентност и отчетност на трошоците кои ги прават владините функционери. Граѓаните имаат право на сите информации за трошењето на нивните пари, и тоа од страна на Владата ќе се спроведува и во иднина“, се вели во соопштението на СДСМ. Заложбите за целосно и навремено информирање на граѓаните за трошењето на нивните пари, тврди владејачката партија, и понатаму ќе се спроведуваат.[/QUOTE]
Here is another from the same site, no surprise that these traitors also support Zaev's politics.

[QUOTE]ВМРО-НП ја поздрави одлуката на ЕУ за отпочнување преговори со Македонија, 28 јуни, 2018

ВМРО-Народната партија ја поздрави одлуката на Европската унија за отпочнување на преговори со Македонија за членство, идната година. „Сметаме дека со ова започнуваме ново поглавје но и привршување на еден голем и мачен процес на реформи преку усогласување и исполнување на критериумите за конечно интегрирање на Македонија во Европската унија“, се вели во соопштението на ВМРО-Народна партија. Партијата, сепак, изрази разочараност дека и покрај фактот што, како што велат, Македонија веќе ги исполнила сите услови за целосно вклучување во ЕУ не добила покана за отпочнување на преговорите оваа година. „Од друга страна пак веруваме дека со оглед на исполентите услови но и неколкуте позитивни извештаји сепак Македонија утре ќе добие покана за отпочнување на преговорите за членство во НАТО, бидејќи Македонија без сомневање со своето повеќегодишно залагање во однос на Евроатлантските интеграции заслужува да биде дел од Евроатлантското семејство“, се истакнува во соопштението на ВМРО-Народна.[/QUOTE]

Niko777 06-28-2018 12:07 PM

The Economist

[B][COLOR="Red"]The obstacles on Macedonia’s road to the EU[/COLOR][/B]

Article: [url][/url]


Soldier of Macedon 06-28-2018 08:05 PM

[QUOTE=Niko777;174757]The Economist

[B][COLOR="Red"]The obstacles on Macedonia’s road to the EU[/COLOR][/B]

Article: [url][/url]

Niko (and everybody else), please post the article when you post the link.
[QUOTE]Macedonia’s reformers swallowed a difficult deal with Greece. Now they need Europe’s help

June 28, 2018

SOLZA GRCEVA’s face curdles into a sneer as she traces the betrayal of her nation. Over coffee in Skopje, the capital of the country that may soon no longer officially be known as the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Ms Grceva outlines her grievances. The government’s “illegal” agreement with Greece last month to rebrand the country North Macedonia, she says, was a “gesture of weakness and capitulation”. What Macedonians call themselves will now be judged in Athens, forging an “Orwellian” state. Ms Grceva, a former MP now running a new centrist party, is far from alone in her anger. When your columnist asks for the bill, it turns out to have been settled by a sympathetic eavesdropper. The name issue is one of the sillier disputes in a region hardly lacking them. The Greeks believe that plain “Macedonia” implies a claim on their northern regions of the same name; a suggestion the (ex-Yugoslav) Macedonians consider offensive and absurd. To say that passions run deep on this is like saying Brazilians have a passing interest in football. Merely to discuss it is to enter a dizzyingly Balkan blend of history, geography, linguistics, psychology, archaeology and even musicology. After 27 years of this row, it was heartening that Zoran Zaev and Alexis Tsipras, respectively the Macedonian and Greek prime ministers, were able to find a mutually acceptable formula. But the deal has sparked violent nationalist protests and political upheaval in both countries. Its passage into law is assured in neither.

Greek vetoes have long kept Macedonia out of NATO and the European Union. Their lifting means an offer to join NATO should be forthcoming at the club’s summit in mid-July. But the real prize remains further out of reach. This week, after a tortuous ten-hour debate, the EU’s governments agreed to offer Macedonia (and Albania) a faint green light, proposing a start to membership talks in June 2019 if judicial and other reforms are carried out. It was better than some had feared, but after the Greek deal some Macedonians had dared to hope for more encouraging language, with fewer conditions and a quicker start to talks. “Our drive towards European democracy could have been more openly embraced,” says Nikola Dimitrov, Macedonia’s foreign minister. If there is frustration, it is because tiny Macedonia offers a rare good-news story in the Balkans. For years it was run into the ground by a rotten regime that intimidated opponents, hollowed out the state and populated Skopje with kitsch statues of Alexander the Great simply to annoy the Greeks. It took a political crisis, culminating in nationalists storming parliament and beating up MPs, including Mr Zaev, in April 2017, to bring decisive change. Mr Zaev’s government, which took office soon afterwards, has started well, soothing quarrels with neighbours and beginning reforms. Relations between Macedonians and the large Albanian minority, once close to war, are smoother than ever. Yet corruption and clientelism remain rife, and the history of Mr Zaev’s Social Democrats is less than spotless. The government’s reformers need the anchor of EU accession talks, says Mr Dimitrov.

This is where a thoughtful EU would step in. In the autumn Mr Zaev must win a referendum on his name deal. That should be enough to convince the parliament to make the relevant constitutional changes. Yet without a better prospect of EU talks Mr Zaev is exposed to charges from Ms Grceva and her allies that Macedonia has humiliated itself for nothing. If the opposition parties all urge a boycott, the referendum may struggle to reach the required 50% turnout. Mr Zaev has vowed to resign if that happens. So why the European reluctance to help? Corruption and regional rows have hardly helped the case of the Balkan states. But they have also fallen victim to the EU’s fatigue with earlier enlargement. Look at Poland and Hungary, say sceptics, steadily dismantling the rule of law from inside the club. Turkey began membership talks in 2005, and has only turned more illiberal since. The counterargument is that the Macedonians threw off an authoritarian regime, solved what seemed like an impossible regional dispute and now deserve European help to bury the past. Other powers are sniffing around: Turkey is funding mosques and civil society, and Russian flags have been flown at recent protests. Full EU membership is perhaps a decade away. But simply starting talks could reassure investors, blunt the arguments of nationalists and help convince young Macedonians, who have quit the country in droves, that there is a future at home.

Tidying Europe’s courtyard

The debate highlights Europe’s conflicted approach to its Balkan courtyard. The strongest opposition to opening membership talks came from Emmanuel Macron, France’s president, along with the Dutch. Mr Macron says the EU must reform before growing. But such opponents of enlargement are just “wetting their pants”, fearing that the prospect of migration from the Balkans will be a gift to populists, says an irritated Eurocrat; so much for Mr Macron’s grand ideas for a Europe that lives up to its potential. Germany takes the opposite tack, seeing Balkan expansion as a strategic necessity. It is not an outlandish view. Macedonian officials have taken to comparing their detente with Greece to the post-war Franco-German reconciliation, conducted through and for Europe. If that is overblown, fixing one Balkan problem does at least make the others more visible, notes Florian Bieber, an expert on the region. Hashim Thaci, Kosovo’s president, says the next step could include the talks between his country and Serbia—a dispute over people and borders that retains the potential for violence. If the notion that enlargement can solve as well as create problems seems eccentric in parts of Europe, Macedonia’s reformers offer a corrective. This week may not have delivered the warm welcome they sought from the EU, but Mr Dimitrov is hopeful. “The bigger the obstacles,” he says, “the grander the success.”[/QUOTE]

Tomche Makedonche 06-29-2018 02:27 AM


[B]Macedonian PM Zoran Zaev: EU accession talks a 'historic decision'[/B]

As the EU announced it will allow accession talks with Western Balkan nations, Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev told DW that his country will "proudly walk through the gates of Europe

[COLOR="Blue"][B]DW:[/B] [I]Mr. Prime Minister, there are different interpretations of the EU's decision to start membership talks with Macedonia and Albania. Your government claimed it as a historic success but critics say it is another postponement and disappointment for the country. How do you see the decision?[/I][/COLOR]

[B]Zoran Zaev:[/B] It is a great day for the Republic of Macedonia. A great acknowledgment for our country. The European Union and the leaders of all member states recognized the Republic of Macedonia as a country of positive changes, of dynamic reform process, inclusiveness and of open dialogue.

There is no other description for this decision: it is a historic one. We have a date for negotiations: June 2019. Until then, together with our friends and partners from the European Commission, we will work on accomplishing the criteria, or in other words, implementation of the phases in the agreement with Greece and finalizing of the reforms. We are very close to our goal of reaching the EU standards. We have a clear goal ahead of us. We have our last homework assignment to finalize – the last phase of the reforms. Then, we can proudly enter through the gates of Europe.

[COLOR="Blue"][B]DW:[/B] [I]Would the EU decision have been possible without German support considering the strong resistance from France and other EU members?[/I][/COLOR]

[B]Zoran Zaev:[/B]Germany's dedication to the results that the Western Balkan countries should deliver has been of utmost importance and a great motivation for us to complete our reforms. The Republic of Macedonia deeply appreciates the strong messages of support coming from Germany for our strategic goals – our NATO and EU membership.

I would like to use this moment to thank Chancellor [Angela] Merkel for initiating the Berlin Process and for having Germany as one of the strongest supporters of this process. This initiative is the key motivator for the new, dynamic regional cooperation on the highest political levels.

[COLOR="Blue"][B]DW:[/B] [I]Why did France and the Netherlands so strongly object to Macedonia's bid to start negotiations sooner?[/I][/COLOR]

[B]Zoran Zaev:[/B]We understand the positions and needs of the EU member countries who believe that the EU firstly needs a consolidation before the further enlargement with new members. At the same time, we believe there are arguments supporting the idea that the EU consolidation will be finalized if the enlargement process continues, because in this way, important safety and security issues connected with external influences can be effectively managed. That is the next necessary step in accordance with the political, security and economic interests of the Union.

The consolidation of the EU will be complete when the union accepts the Western Balkan countries that fulfill the necessary conditions in its family – of course, including the Republic of Macedonia.

[COLOR="Blue"][B]DW:[/B] [I]In its conclusions regarding Macedonia the EU asks for more focus on these key areas: judicial reforms, tackling corruption, intelligence, security services and public administration. Can your government deliver on these reforms in a relatively short period until June 2019?[/I][/COLOR]

[B]Zoran Zaev:[/B]I am convinced we can achieve that. All those points have passed through the first phase of the reform process and will be further intensified with the new comprehensive reform plan that will be adopted very soon. We have all arguments to say that the recommendations established with the date for negotiations, will be fully implemented!

[COLOR="Blue"][B]DW:[/B] [I]On another topic: recently Albania was mentioned as a possible destination for a refugee and migrant camp. Is there pressure on Macedonia from some EU members to allow such a camp on its territory, too? [/I][/COLOR]

[B]Zoran Zaev:[/B]In this moment, in the government of the Republic of Macedonia there are no discussions about opening refugee camps here. Macedonia already has two functioning transit centers for short stays of migrants and the security of the national borders in this moment is generally good, but there are no conditions for opening new migrant camps.

[COLOR="Blue"][B]DW:[/B] [I]Less than two weeks ago your government signed a historic agreement with neighboring Greece on the name issue. How much harder does this conditional invitation from the EU makes your efforts to convince the nationalists and the opposition in your country to support the deal?[/I] [/COLOR]

[B]Zoran Zaev:[/B]I remain firmly and fully dedicated to demonstrating that this agreement with Greece solves the biggest problem that was preventing our development since our independence.

We got a crystal-clear confirmation for the Macedonian language and identity. Macedonians, at home and abroad. Translatable, without any limitations, into all languages in the world. An identity for overall use. Those political factors that cannot see this are creating new divisions. We need to unite around this new historical opportunity. I believe in this, and I will invest all my political integrity and energy to that end.

[COLOR="Blue"][B]DW:[/B] [I]Yet there is strong resistance in Greece against the recognition of a "Macedonian nation" and "Macedonian language" as part of the agreement. Is that a cause of concern for you?[/I][/COLOR]

[B]Zoran Zaev:[/B]The fact that the political parties in opposition of both countries are against the agreement between the Republic of Macedonia and the Republic of Greece shows that a good compromise between the people of both counties has been reached. The citizens of Macedonia got a full recognition of the Macedonian identity on all accounts, and the citizens of Greece got a recognition for the Hellenic inheritance from the ancient part of history.

The political parties in both countries have had an opportunity to solve this dispute for decades, but they have not done anything. On the contrary, they were only strengthening the differences. Now, when faced with the fact that a solution is possible, and that this solution is equally acceptable for both sides, they chose to disprove it, instead of accepting that this is the only way the two countries can move forward.

[COLOR="Blue"][B]DW:[/B] [I]Are there any plans for new meetings with the Greek PM [Alexis] Tsipras in order to maintain the process of rapprochement between the two countries?[/I][/COLOR]

[B]Zoran Zaev:[/B]The possibilities for meetings are now continuously open. We have built a friendship though this process that allows us to communicate in different ways at any given moment. There are no more barriers for our connection. Together we will follow and celebrate the process after Prespa.

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