Greek and Macedonian Prime Ministers to find a solution to settle the name dispute

Author (Person)
Series Details May 2018
Publication Date 31/05/2018
Content Type


At the EU-Western Balkans summit, 17 May 2018, the PM of Greece Alexis Tsipras and the Macedonian counterpart Zoran Zaev met in order to try to settle a decades-long issue about the name of Macedonia.

Further information:

Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov, who hosted the summit, hinted that there had been real progress in the Greece-Macedonia talks but said that both leaders would make announcements in their capitals, not abroad, when the time came.

If they managed to iron out the last details, the two countries could strike a final deal before the European Council, 28-29 June 2018, when the European Commission could recommend to start accession talks with Macedonia.

The issue of the name of Macedonia had been going on for decades and during the previous months there have been new rounds of official and unofficial negotiations due to the Macedonian authorities' willingness to solve the issue.

Greece considered the country's name represented a territorial claim over its northern province, also named Macedonia. Years of UN-mediated talks and pressure from the European Union achieved no progress. The dispute had been active ever since FYR Macedonia became an independent country, blocking Macedonia’s progress towards NATO and EU membership.

Related Links
Politico, 30.05.18: Macedonian PM calls for referendum on new name
Kathimerini, 18.05.18: Skopje said to have proposed ‘Republic of Ilinden Macedonia’
EurActiv, 17.05.18: Skopje opposition’s stance takes centre stage in Tsipras-Zaev talks
Kathimerini, 18.05.18: Greek, FYROM premiers aim to resolve name dispute before EU summit on June 28
Greek Reporter, 17.05.18: Tsipras: ‘Still Much to be Done’ After Meeting with FYROM Premier
Balkan Insight, 17.05.18: Macedonia, Greek PMs Pinpoint Possible ‘Name’ Solution
Reuters, 17.05.18: Greece and Macedonia inch closer to name accord, but not quite there yet
Reuters, 18.05.18: Greek PM to brief opposition parties over Macedonia name dispute
The Wall Street Journal, 17.05.18: Macedonia, Greece Close to Ending Decades-Old Dispute Over Name
Fox News, 18.05.18: British PM says courage needed on Macedonian-Greek name spat
Euro|topics, May 2018: Name row: must Macedonia swallow the bitter pill?
EurActiv, 31.05.18: Local Orthodox church asks to drop ‘Macedonia’ from name as talks with Greece continue

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