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  Friday, December 13, 2019
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NATO member states have postponed Macedonia's bid for membership
NATO member states have postponed Macedonia's bid for membership in the alliance after Greece vetoed the request, NATO's secretary general said on Thursday.

It was expected that Macedonia, along with Balkan neighbors Croatia and Albania, would be invited to join NATO at the Bucharest summit, but earlier in the week the Greek Foreign Minister said that Greece would veto Macedonia's bid until the former Yugoslav republic changes its name.

Speaking at the NATO summit in Romania Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer said a concrete date for the resumption of membership talks had not been set, but he would like them to take place as soon as possible.

The dispute over Macedonia's name has been ongoing for 17 years, with Greece objecting to Skopje using Republic of Macedonia. Athens is unhappy, maintaining that it implies territorial claims on Greece's northern province of Macedonia.

Skopje has suggested using the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), which most Macedonians are unhappy with, but is used by the UN and many international organizations.

Greece has said it would be satisfied if Skopje renamed itself "New" or "Upper" Macedonia.


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