In his address at the lunch in honor of the UN Secretary Ban Ki-moon in Athens on November 4, 2009 the President of the Hellenic Republic Karolos Papoulias in regard to the issue of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (fYRoM) noted: “The problem is simple. The geographical area of Macedonia is since the Middle Ages a multiethnic region. It is not the homeland of one single nation.
The tort of Skopje is that while as a state and an ethnicity is a Part, it portrays itself as if it is the Whole. They call their country ‘Macedonia’, their ethnicity and language ‘macedonian’, because through these names they are trying to register mortgages in all of Macedonia. The rhetoric for the great macedonian dismembered homeland is serving this view. “
The President made clear that Greece is not seeking to baptize the neighboring state, but resists to this attempt of usurpation.
“We support a composite name with a geographical qualifier for the state that is for all uses, with the exclusive aim of the names to reflect the reality of the region so as to act as a factor of good neighborhood and not as a factor that poisons the bilateral relations and the climate in the wider region.”
“Good neighborly relations between countries are not built on outstanding issues” said the President, with a particular reference to his personal efforts as a foreign minister.
“We signed the Interim Agreement in 1995 just to give the possibility to find in a consensual climate a compromise to be grounded in the reality of the region. Unfortunately, Skopje turned the planned negotiation to a speculation process.
As a result, Greece has no choice but to set as a condition for the membership of the fYRoM in the European Union and the NATO, a mutually acceptable solution. As long as this outstanding issue finds no solution, Greece cannot give its consent. “
“fYRoM itself has the key to its integration into the Euro-Atlantic institutions” he concluded.
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