Greek Media Puts Pressure over Macedonia's Accession to NATO and EU

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias at recently held EU General Affairs Council (GAC) meeting in Luxembourg was verbally attacked by some of his EU colleagues in regard to Macedonia name dispute, Greek media reported.

The latest information explain Kotzias’s statement in Luxembourg which mainly addressed the situation in Macedonia that was actually a response to what happened at the meeting behind closed doors, MIA correspondent reports from Athens.

According to some Greek media, Kotzias at the meeting “suffered unprecedented and rather methodical verbal attack, at least unethical for European diplomats.”

Foreign Ministers of Germany, the Netherlands and Austria directly blamed Greece for the dangerous political instability that exists in Macedonia. They argued that the "veto" of Greece at the prospect of FYROM to join NATO and EU under its constitutional name Macedonia has created serious internal problems in this state, which resulted in postponement of parliamentary elections, which were scheduled for June 5, and political instability problems, Paraskinio newspaper reads.

Newspaper also adds that political instability is easily spread in Western Balkans once associated with nationalist and irredentist minority demands.”

European Foreign Ministers claimed that Greece’s insisting on name issue of Skopje name is counterproductive, it is not in accordance with European values and principles and, in particular, has trapped the EU countries, only for reasons of solidarity with Greece have not recognized the FYROM with the illegitimate "Macedonia", as 134 UN member states have done, including the USA, China and Russia, and established procedures for Macedonia’s accession to the EU are not yet started.

Kotzias after the meeting explained that in 1997, when we vetoed Turkey due to the Cyprus issue, everyone in Turkey said that once Greece lifted the veto, Turkey would become a member of the European Union the next day, and that neither would there be democratic problems in Turkey.

It has proved that, from 1997 to today – 19 years, and 17 since Tampere and Helsinki, where we lifted the veto – the problems of that time continue to exist in the Turkey of today and in Turkey’s relations with the European Union. I’m not looking at who or what is at fault. I am assessing the fact, responding briefly, as I did, to the argument that if we hadn’t used our veto due to the name issue, Macedonia would be stable today. The developments in EU­-Turkey relations show how wrong that outlook is, Kotzias stated.


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