US Hails Macedonian Parliament's Vote On Name Change - Pompeo

US Hails Macedonian Parliament's Vote on Name Change - Pompeo

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 13th January, 2019) The United States welcomes the Macedonian parliament's decision to vote in favor of an amendment to the constitution to rename the country Republic of North Macedonia, US State Secretary Mike Pompeo said on Saturday.

On Friday, a majority in Macedonia's parliament voted in favor of a constitutional amendment changing its name after a deal was agreed between Skopje and Athens last June. Macedonian President Gjorge Ivanov said he would not authorize the move but Prime Minister Zoran Zaev stated the decision did not require presidential approval.

"The United States welcomes the decision by Macedonia's Parliament to adopt the constitutional amendments needed to ratify the Prespa Agreement with Greece," Pompeo said in a statement.

The state secretary praised the "vision, courage, and persistence" of Macedonia's leaders in their pursuit of a solution to the long-standing dispute with Greece.

The name change will put to an end Macedonia's almost 30-year dispute with Greece, which barred it from joining NATO and the European Union. Athens vetoed Macedonia's accession fearing claims on its region of the same name.

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