Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) Prime Minister Zoran Zaev appeared confident on Thursday of a breakthrough in talks with Greece regarding his country’s name, noting that a solution is within reach if it has the support of political parties in both countries.
“I am Zoran and my partner’s name is Alexis. And we have to consult the other political factors in our countries with our presidents and the other political leaders. And if they accept then we can have a solution,” he told reporters following talks with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on the sidelines of the EU-Western Balkans summit in Sofia.
“We are solving a dispute in order to strengthen the identity of our citizens in both countries,” he added
“We have discussed one [specific] solution to the name dispute that could be acceptable for both sides, but we need to have further discussions in our countries,” Zaev told said.
Athens and Skopje are now working on the specific steps of a roadmap that could lead to a solution, Zaev told the press briefing, saying that he hopes for a deal before June’s European Union summit, where FYROM is looking to promote its bid to join the bloc.