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FYROMacedonia:Anti Name Change Protests Announced
Skopje | 21 November 2009 | Sinisa-Jakov Marusic
A string of protest rallies will be staged in “Macedonia” and abroad in a bid to have the talks with Greece suspended, the so-called resistance movement against changing the state name of Macedonia said.
The movement acts with support of several NGO’s and civic associations including the World “Macedonian” Congress, and ex-pat communities such as the United “Macedonians” in Canada and “Macedonian” communities in the United States, Australia and Europe.
Protests will be staged on 20 November and 27 November in front of the EU Mission in Skopje.
A protest march will also be organised on 2 December in front of the government and parliament buildings, the organisers said.
“The series of protest rallies… are expected to send a strong message for immediate and unconditional termination of negotiations with Athens regarding the state name of Macedonia” the head of the World “Macedonian” Congress, Todor Petrov told a news conference on Thursday.
The movement plans to stage protests in several cities across the world on 6 December, just one day before the EU Council’s meeting where member states will decide whether to give Skopje a date to start EU accession negotiations.
Last year Athens blocked Skopje’s NATO accession over the 18 years-long spat. Athens insists that Skopje’s official name, the Republic of “Macedonia”, implies territorial claims towards its own northern province – also called Macedonia.
Local media speculate that some version of the compound name Northern Macedonia to clearly distinct the state from the Greek province is still on the table at the UN sponsored “name” talks between the two countries.
In 1993 due to Greece’s pressure Macedonia agreed to enter the UN under the provisional reference “Former
Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia”, FYROM, pending a resolution of the long-running dispute.
Since then some 120 countries worldwide, including China, the United States of America and Russia have
recognised country’s constitutional name, Republic of “Macedonia”.
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