Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias is heading to Skopje on Thursday with a document containing a comprehensive proposal from Athens to settle a decades old name dispute with the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM).
The document, Kotzias said on Monday, “addresses all of our open issues with FYROM as well as a future agenda of cooperation that will bring gains to both sides.
“I sent this agenda to Skopje several days ago,” he added.
There are five names on the table for talks, which Kotzias will be discussing with his FYROM counterpart, Nikola Dimitrov. These are: Republika Nova Makedonija (Republic of New Macedonia), Republika Severna Makedonija (Republic of Northern Macedonia), Republika Gorna Makedonija (Republic of Upper Macedonia), Republika Vardarska Makedonija (Republic of Vardar Macedonia) and Republika Makedonija (Skopje) (Republic of Macedonia [Skopje]).
The head of Greece’s junior coalition partner, Independent Greeks’ Panos Kammenos, has said he will not back any solution containing the word “Macedonia,” while there is also opposition within FYROM to Greek demands for changes to constitutional clauses deemed as expressing irredentist ambitions.
Speaking ahead of Kotzias’s visit on Monday, however, FYROM’s prime minister, Zoran Zaev, said he is confident of a solution being reached by the summer, “provided that it will be decent [solution], and respect the issues pertaining to [the country’s] identity.”