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Politics

Mitsotakis Gets Behind North Macedonia’s Hopes to Join the EU

ATHENS — He condemned a deal that renamed the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) as North Macedonia and said he would make revisions but now Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis is on board to supports its hopes of joining the European Union.

That would be, he cautioned, only if Greece's neighbor lives up to the accord that was driven through a previous Parliament ruled by the Radical Left SYRIZA that gave away the name of Greece's northern province of Macedonia.

Some foreign media still refer to North Macedonia as only Macedonia, which had been the goal of former FYROM governments although much of the world even then referred to the country as Macedonia.

Mitsotakis said when he took power in July 7, 2019 snap elections in ousting SYRIZA that he would try to block agricultural products in North Macedonia calling themselves Macedonian because it would confuse them with Greek goods made in the real Macedonia, but didn't. 

Mitsotakis said after meeting North Macedonia's Premier Zoran Zaev that,  

“Respect for good-neighborly relations and the full, consistent and in good faith implementation of the Prespes agreement remain vital – as we have discussed,” referring to the name of the lake bordering the countries where it was signed.

These are the key indicators in our bilateral relations, but also for the prospect of your country joining the EU,” he added, said Kathimerini.

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ATHENS – In the aftermath of the latest violations of the Prespa Agreement that established ‘North Macedonia’ as the official name of Greece’s northern neighbor – its newly elected president insists she has a personal right to call her country ‘Macedonia’, contrary to the ‘erga omnes’ provision of the agreement which calls for ‘North Macedonia’ to be used in all contexts – the West is once again struggling to understand what the latest Balkan dispute is all about.

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