PanMacedonian Letter to the UN Spokesperson and all UN Ambassadors




Nina Gatzoulis

Coordinator of the Committee

of World Pan-Macedonian Associations


Tel: 603-742-0466

October 28, 2013


Martin Nesirky

Spokesperson for the Secretary General of UN


Your Excellency,

We, the representatives of the Macedonians (Greeks numbering 3.5 million around the world), are concerned about a specific incident relating to the censorship of a recent United Nations (UN) press release by the UN itself. The press release, dated September 27, 2013 and titled “Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia [FYROM] urges greater UN action over ‘name’ issue”, appeared on the UN News Centre website and described the speech given to the UN by the FYROM’s Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski during this year’s UN General Assembly [1].

In the original release, a brief yet balanced report highlighting both Greece’s and the FYROM’s perspectives were presented alongside news of Prime Minister Gruevski’s speech. However, someone seems to have been offended by the original release and the UN News Centre changed it a few days later. As a result, only the FYROM’s perspective was presented and the Greek arguments were censored. The press release then became a soapbox of sorts for the FYROM in the UN. Specifically, the following phrases were removed:

Paragraph 4: “…Mr. Gruevski said referring to his country as the ‘Republic of Macedonia’ although it was admitted to the UN in 1993 under the name of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.”

Paragraph 5: “Greece applies the name Macedonia to its second largest region, which in ancient times was the home of ethnic Greeks, whose most famous member was Alexander the Great.”

Informational oversights aside (Macedonia is the largest geographical and the second most populous region in Greece), these two phrases (small as they were) were the only two marquee statements that summed up Greek arguments in this UN press release.

The original press release can be seen in both the Greek and the FYROM media. The Greek media and blogs expressed dismay and concern over the censorship [2], whilst one FYROM pro-government website applauded the UN action and used a questionable epithet for the name of Greece while implying that the UN News Centre employed Greeks. [3].

The argument between Athens and Skopje is a complex one and the UN is well aware of it. For Greece it isn’t simply about a name. It is deeper and involves history, cultural continuity and self-determination since antiquity, modern territorial and demographic identity, and copyright of produced and exported goods. However, why was the Greek argument silenced in this case? Was it untrue? Wasn’t Skopje admitted to the UN as “the FYROM” in 1993 based on UN Security Council Resolution 817, paragraph 2 [4]? Didn’t the FYROM sign the UN-brokered 1995 Interim Accord accepting the provisional term “the FYROM” as its name in Article 11 of the accord [5]? As it stands, Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski disregarded his own country’s decisions and the wishes of the UN from the podium of the General Assembly.

Furthermore, and despite the fact that we prefer to dwell in the present with thoughts on the future, Macedonians have always been ethnic Greeks and have lived in Macedonia since at least 3000 years – and yes, Alexander the Great was Greek [6].

With actions such as the censorship of Greek facts on the matter, the UN has disregarded a more populous and substantially older people and history, implying that our arguments are unimportant – or worse, irrelevant and unworthy of mention.

We ask the UN why the aforementioned phrases were removed, by whom, and on whose insistence?


Pan-Macedonian Association USA- Dimitris Chatzis, Supreme President

Pan-Macedonian Association Australia – Dimitris Minas, President

Pan-Macedonian Association Canada – Dimitris Yantsoulis, President

Pan-Macedonian Association Europe – Archimandrite Panteleimon Tsorbatzoglou, President

Pan-Macedonian Associations of Africa – Amyntas Papathanasiou, President



Nina Gatzoulis, Coordinator (Representing over 150 Macedonian Organizations)

Philoptohos Brotherhood of Men of Thessaloniki – Theodore Dardavesis, President

Florina Chapter in Thessaloniki – Demitrios Gakis, President

Association of Pisoderites the World Over “Saint Trinity”- Michael Liakos, President

Thracian Hearth of Thessaloniki-Benjamin Karakostanoglou, President

Federation of Western Macedonian Associations of Thessaloniki-George Tzoulis-President

“Omada 21” (Team 21) Macedonia – Thrace – Antonios Daskopoulos, President



Florina Chapter of the Descendants of the Macedonian Struggle Fighters

Amyntaio Chapter of the Descendants of the Macedonian Struggle Fighters

Florina Educational Team “Aristotle”

Cultural Chapter of Sitaria Florina

Cultural Chapter “New Horizons” Sitaria, Florina

Cultural Chapter “Alexander the Great” of Polyplatanos, Florina

Alexander the Great Chapter of Ethniko-Kratero-Agia Paraskevi

Carrier of history and Culture “Iera Drys” of Kella, Florina

Cultural-Educational Chapter “Amyntas” of Skopia, Florina

Connection of Letters and Arts of Kozani Prefecture

Cultural Chapter of Kozani “The Macedonians”

Association of Edessa’s citizens “Ion Dragoumis”

Association of Macedonian Veteran Descendants of Edessa and Almopia

Folklore Society of Pella Prefecture

Association of Edessa’s Friends of Antiquities “The Timenides”

Cultural Association “Edessa’s Book Friends”

Association of “Macedonian Cultural Home” of Aridaia

Association of “Friends of Macedonian Cultural Tradition” of Almopia

Educational Association of Ida Eksaplatanos “Ion Dragoumis”

Historical and Folklore Society of Giannitsa “Filippos”

Macedonian Dance and Cultural Association “Amyntas” of Kalyvia

Educational and Environmental Club of Pella “Ancient Pella”

Cultural Association of Kato Grammatiko “Patriarchis Xrysanthos”

Community of Letters and Arts of Kozani Prefecture

Educational Association of Florina “Aristotle”

Cultural Association of Ethniko-Kratero- Agia Paraskevi of Florina “Alexander the Great”.

Cultural Association “Elpida Melitis”of Florina.

Pan- Hellenic Association of Macedonian Veteran Descendants “Pavlos Mellas”

Pan-Hellenic Cultural Society “Makednos” Thessaloniki

Cultural and Educational Society in Arnaia-Chalkidiki

Macedonian Artistic Society of Kilkis “Art”

Society for Study and Research of the History of Serres

Youth Educational Chapter of Arnissa

Educational-Cultural Chapter Lefkadion “St. Paraskevi”

Chapter of Startsovites & Friends “St. Minas” New Petritsi – Serres

Association of people from Monastiri (Bitola) of Thessaloniki “Karteria”

Macedonian & Thracian Association of Papagou and Holargou –Athens

Association of Women from Thessaloniki-Macedonia in Athens

Pan-Macedonian Association of the Macedonian Struggle-Thessaloniki

Pan-Macedonian Confederation in Athens

Federation of Western Macedonian Associations in the Prefecture of Attica

Confederation of Macedonians in the area of Attica

Association “Alexander Filippou Greek Macedon”

Cultural Association of Kozani “Oi Makednoi”

Macedonian Association of Volos

Cultural Association Grivas-Kilkis

Cultural Association of Polyplatanos-Naousa

Youth Cultural Association of Polyplatanos-Naousa

Friends of the Museum of the Macedonian Struggle, Prefecture of Kastoria

Association of Drama’s Cultural Studies

Informative Committee of National Issues

Macedonian Chapter “Alexander the Great” in Iraklio, Attica



cc:   Farhan Haq –Associate Spokesperson of the Secretary General

        Jerome Bernard- Associate Spokesperson of the Secretary General

        Vannina Maestracci- Associate Spokesperson of the Secretary General

        Eri Kaneko-Associate Spokesperson of the Secretary General

        Morana Song-Associate Spokesperson of the Secretary General

        Ambassadors of the UN

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