Report advises FYROM to resolve name dispute with Greece

A report by the Brussels-based non-governmental organisation “International Crisis Group” on the progress made by the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) ten years after the signature of the Ohrid Agreement has advised its government to quickly resolve the name dispute with Greece and resume the now stalled efforts to join the EU and Nato in order to preserve the momentum for unity.

Among others it advises Skopje to publicly accept a geographic qualifier to its name, secure national consensus and hold a referendum no later than November. According to the authors of the report, an open compromise on the name will then put the “ball in Greece’s court to accept the ‘Macedonian’ identity of its neighbour and its language”.

It also advises, as a further show of good will to appease Greece, that Fyrom should reverse provocative steps such as naming its airport for Alexander the Great and parts of the Skopje 2014 urban renewal project, and make it clear that it does not consider its name to imply exclusive rights and does not challenge the application of the term to the inhabitants of the Greek province of Macedonia.

It is particularly critical of what it describes as a “misguided” Skopje 2014 urban renewal project initiated by the previous government of Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski, stressing that it “represents for many a nationalist vision of the state that leaves little room for minorities, especially Albanians” and alienates those that do not share it.

“The project has nothing to do with an EU future and, by gratuitously provoking Greece, is actively postponing it,” the report adds.

The full report is available here.

Languagesel>en YahooCE

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