The UN Secretary General’s Personal Envoy for the talks between Greece and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, former US Ambassador Matthew Nimetz, will travel to the region between September 9 and 11, 2013 for meetings in Athens and Skopje, Anadolu Agency (AA) was told Tuesday in UN Headquarters in New York.
Ambassador Nimetz will be meeting in Athens and Skopje with senior government officials of both countries to continue discussions on finding a mutually acceptable resolution to the “name” issue.
Because of the strong objections from Greece, Macedonia was admitted to the UN on April 8, 1993 under the temporary name "the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia."
Since then, more then 160 members of the UN have recognized the country under its constitutional name of Republic of Macedonia.
A large section of northern Greece is also called Macedonia. With the 22-year-old name dispute with Greece, Macedonia's Euro-Atlantic accession dreams remain as far as ever.
Macedonia and Greece have held negotiations to find a solution to the name issue since 1991 - under the auspices of the United Nations.
Back in April this year according to the well informed UN sources, UN mediator Matthew Nimitz proposed that Macedonia could be known as "the Upper Republic of Macedonia."
Greece has reportedly given its consent to Macedonia to join NATO and start negotiations for EU accession under the proposed name.
In return, Macedonia was required to enter an amendment into its constitution that says that the Upper Republic of Macedonia will be the international name of the country, local media reported at the time.
There were no signs that government in Skopje accepted that proposal.
Although there were calls from UN to solve the situation rather sooner then later – both sides remain firmly entrenched in their positions. So far there are no tangible results.
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"The talks with the US have de facto failed because we Europeans of course must not succumb to American demands," he told public broadcaster ZDF. "Nothing is moving forward."
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