NEWS

Gov’t slams opposition pledge to renegotiate name deal

govt-slams-opposition-pledge-to-renegotiate-name-deal

The government Wednesday attacked main opposition leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis for pledging to renegotiate the name deal signed between Athens and Skopje last summer if he becomes prime minister. 

A statement issued by Maximos Mansion pointed at comments made by UN envoy Matthew Nimetz Wednesday in which he warned that failure to ratify the so-called Prespes deal would entail “profound” consequences for both countries.

In an interview with state-run Athens-Macedonia news agency, Nimetz ruled out the possibility of a “quick-fix” should the deal not be endorsed by the Greek Parliament, adding “it would take years” for Athens and Skopje to hammer out a new deal.

“Nimetz has essentially put an end to Mr Mitsotakis’s fairy tale,” the statement said while criticizing the New Democracy chief of changing his long-standing position on the name dispute for the sake of political expediency.

Greek MPs were Wednesday debating the deal in a stormy parliamentary session scheduled to culminate in a vote late Thursday. Wednesday's plenary debate began after the deal passed through Parliament's committee on defense and foreign policy.

Critics have called for a demonstration in Athens Thursday.