North Macedonia’s Presidential oath strains diplomatic relations with Greece

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Amidst the solemnity of the swearing-in ceremony in Parliament, tension flared as North Macedonia‘s new President, Gordana Siljanovska-Davkova, defied diplomatic decorum by referring to her country as “Macedonia,” rather than the agreed-upon “North Macedonia.”

This breach of the Prespa Agreement and the constitutional protocols of North Macedonia elicited a dramatic response, marked by the departure of the Greek Ambassador to North Macedonia, Sofia Filippidou, who left the proceedings in protest.

The incident has reignited longstanding tensions rooted in the complex geopolitical landscape of the region. Greece, having diligently adhered to the Prespa Agreement despite initial reservations, now stands firm in its demand for adherence to the terms outlined therein.

Any advancement in bilateral relations between Greece and North Macedonia, as well as the latter’s aspirations for European integration, hinge upon the faithful implementation of the Prespa Agreement, including the unequivocal use of North Macedonia’s constitutional name.

The Greek Foreign Ministry has responded to the use of the word “Macedonia” by newly sworn-in North Macedonia President Siljanovska-Davkova.

In a statement, it pointed out that the new president’s deliberate avoidance of the country’s constitutional name is a “gross violation” of the 2018 Prespa agreement and warns of consequences in bilateral relations and for North Macedonia’s prospects of joining the European Union.

Source: Ekathimerini.

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