Bad start to FYROM name talks

FYROM yesterday rejected a key element of fresh UN proposals to help settle a 16-year dispute with Greece over the name of the former Yugoslav republic. Reuters reported that Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski said the draft framework presented on Thursday called on FYROM to accept an alternative to its chosen constitutional name for international use. «That part of the document is unacceptable for Macedonia, and we cannot discuss it,» Gruevski told state news agency MIA. On Thursday, UN mediator Matthew Nimetz gave Greece and FYROM some «suggestions» to consider as he prepares to visit both countries this month in a bid to resolve the dispute over the latter’s name. Nimetz held a meeting with Greece’s UN ambassador Adamantios Vassilakis and FYROM’s representative Nikola Dimitrov in what is seen as perhaps the most crucial round of talks between the two countries since the dispute arose. The mediator did not table any specific proposals but «made some suggestions in the form of a draft framework for their consideration.»