Zaev for Euronews Greece: Macedonia doesn't need elections


Macedonia doesn't need to hold elections – unless absolutely necessary, Prime Minister Zoran Zaev said in an interview with Euronews Greece, explaining that MPs were currently consulting with each other.

As MIA's Athens correspondent reports, PM Zaev insisted the country would hold elections only after all options to reach a two-thirds majority in Parliament had been exhausted. He then called on all MPs to do their duty towards the country.

"Macedonia doesn't need elections," Zaev said. "Macedonia is on the right track. We'll open a chapter in June. We'll have a place at the negotiating table in Brussels and NATO while its 29 member states begin ratifying the protocol in their Parliaments. From an economic standpoint, Macedonia is doing great, and there's no need for us to hold elections – unless absolutely necessary. And, of course, if we do, the obvious goal is to achieve two thirds, or 80 MPs."

Zaev also noted that, according to latest surveys, the Government would achieve parliamentary majority should elections be held.

He pointed out that now the most important thing was for politicians and MPs to heed the message of 91 percent of referendum voters who voted in favor of the name agreement and voiced their preference for the course the country should take.

"The messages by Commissioner Hahn and the entire European community," Zaev said, "are a clear incentive for MPs to complete what we started and we expect this to happen.

"This is what we're focused on, as I'm convinced that even the opposition supports our course towards the EU and NATO.

"I have no doubt about it. What should happen is for political fighting to stop so we can finish this process for our country. It's a matter of days. MPs are consulting closely with each other, we're consulting with top ruling party officials as well as with members of the Albanian parties in Government. We believe it's possible and we'll do all we can to succeed."

In the brief Euronews interview, Zaev also said he had talked to Greek "PM and our friend Alexis Tsipras," who congratulated him on Macedonia's referendum outcome of over 90 percent of votes in favor of.

"There's plenty of time," Zaev said, "but we all agree that the sooner the deal is implemented, the better for both countries, considering all the benefits of the agreement.

"The Ministries of Foreign Affairs of both countries are in constant communication, as are our governments, and  we're all focusing on the next stage, which is to implement the agreement in Parliament."

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