Hahn: Name solution a 'game changer' in Macedonia's EU accession process


Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn says the EU is encouraged by the latest round of name talks between Skopje and Athens.

Hahn, who attended Monday an informal breakfast organized by Bulgaria and Austria alongside Macedonia's Foreign Minister Nikola Dimitrov and his European counterparts, tweeted that the meeting was fruitful and everyone expressed wholehearted support to the negotiations.

"Consensus in the room that a solution to the name issue will be a game changer for the next steps in the EU accession process of Macedonia," says Commissioner Hahn.

Diplomatic sources told MIA that FM Dimitrov opened the meeting by saying that a framework for a solution to the name has been reached with Greece, while experts are currently working on the text in Athens. He also briefed ministers over the course of reforms required by the EU, saying "this is a historic time for my country."

"When we launched the process there were significant differences, but I have the impression that we are increasingly on the same side as we move forward," said Dimitrov.

He referred to Macedonia's efforts in the fields of judiciary reforms, fight against corruption, dialogue with the opposition, free media, as well as improvement of good neighborly relations.

Dimitrov asked EU member-states to support Macedonia by giving it a date for the start of accession negotiations.

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