NEWS

Nimetz to arrive with a ‘clear message’

United Nations mediator Matthew Nimetz will arrive in Greece today having received a clear indication of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’s position on the name dispute after talks in Skopje yesterday. «I received clear messages of what is and what is not possible,» said Nimetz after separate talks with FYROM Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski and President Branko Crvenkovski. «Now I have a clear position from Skopje and will go to Thessaloniki to continue the talks.» Nimetz was asked whether the name Northern Macedonia, in various forms, had formed the basis for yesterday’s discussion but he refused to confirm or deny the rumors. Relations between Greece and FYROM have been strained recently after Gruevski angered Athens by writing to the leaders of various international organizations, raising issues that included the existence of a so-called Macedonian minority in Greece. Nimetz said this would not hamper the talks and suggested instead that there is mounting pressure to resolve the dispute. «I would say that exactly this period is important in the talks and we must not miss the chance to try to make some progress,» he said. Sources told Kathimeirni that variations of Northern Macedonia and Upper Macedonia were discussed during yesterday’s meetings. «It’s no secret that we are looking for a solution that will satisfy both sides,» said Nimetz. The mediator also made a point of saying that resolving the name dispute is so complex that there is no room for other issues, such as that raised by Gruevski, to be included in the discussions.