North Macedonia votes to resolve dispute with Bulgaria

by | Jul 16, 2022 | World

Lawmakers pass a deal aimed at settling a dispute with Bulgaria, clearing the way to long-due EU membership talks.Lawmakers in North Macedonia have passed a French-brokered deal aimed at settling a dispute with Bulgaria, clearing the way to long-due European Union membership talks.
A total of 68 lawmakers from the 120-seat parliament voted in favour of the agreement on Saturday. Opposition politicians did not participate in the vote and left the room.
The deal proposes that North Macedonia’s constitution be amended to recognise a Bulgarian minority, while the remaining issues be discussed between Skopje and Sofia. The proposal does not require Bulgaria to recognise the Macedonian language.
In exchange, Bulgaria will allow its West Balkan neighbour to start membership talks with the EU. After the agreement was adopted, governing party deputies rolled out EU and North Macedonian flags.
Both European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and European Council President Charles Michel took to Twitter to congratulate North Macedonia.
“It was a historic opportunity and you seized it,” wrote von der Leyen, calling it a “big step on your path towards a European future”.

🇲🇰 Congratulations to North Macedonia on the vote that now paves the way for opening the accession negotiations rapidly. It was a historic opportunity. And you seized it. A big step on your path towards a European future. Your future.
— Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) July 16, 2022

“Our future is together and we welcome you with open arms,” Michel tweeted.

Today’s vote in @SobranieRSM paves the way to holding intergo …

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