World Greek govt faces no-confidence vote on Macedonia name deal

19:25  14 june  2018
19:25  14 june  2018 Source:   msn.com

"We have a deal", Greek PM says over Macedonian name row

  Greece and Macedonia have reached a historic accord to resolve a decades-old dispute over the name of the tiny Balkan nation, the Greek prime minister said."I have good news ...  a while ago we reached an agreement with the Prime Minister of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia on an issue which has been on our minds for many years," Tsipras told Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos during a televised meeting on Tuesday afternoon.

The deal will open the way for Skopje’s eventual membership of NATO and the European Union, long blocked by Greece , which says use of the name “ Macedonia ” implies a territorial claim on a Deputy Foreign Minister George Katrougkalos challenged the conservatives to submit a vote of no - confidence .

and the junior partner in Greece ’s coalition, the right wing Independent Greeks party, has said it does not back any deal that gives away the name Macedonia . “If they believe this (that the government does not have the legitimacy), they have the means to question it with a no - confidence motion.

New Democracy party leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis addresses lawmakers during a parliamentary session where he submitted a motion of no confidence against Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, in Athens, on Thursday, June 14, 2018. The head of Greece's main opposition party submitted a motion for a no-confidence vote in the government, objecting to a deal reached between the prime ministers of Greece and Macedonia to settle a decades-old dispute over Macedonia's name. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris): New Democracy party leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis submitted a motion of no confidence against Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, in Athens, on Thursday, June 14, 2018. © The Associated Press New Democracy party leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis submitted a motion of no confidence against Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, in Athens, on Thursday, June 14, 2018.

ATHENS, Greece — The prime ministers of Greece and Macedonia faced political storms at home Thursday, two days after reaching a historic deal to settle a decades-old dispute over Macedonia's name.

Greece's Alexis Tsipras faces a vote of no-confidence in his government, while Macedonia's Zoran Zaev is contending with the refusal of the country's president to sign off on the deal if it's approved by parliament.

Greece reaches deal with Macedonia to end name dispute

  Greece reaches deal with Macedonia to end name dispute <p>The prime minister of Greece said his country had reached an agreement with the country's northern neighbor to end a 27-year dispute.</p>Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said in remarks broadcast by state television that a deal had been reached that would give Macedonia a different name that would be used both domestically and internationally.

The deal will open the way for Skopje’s eventual membership of NATO and the European Union, long blocked by Greece , which says use of the name “ Macedonia ” implies a territorial claim on a Deputy Foreign Minister George Katrougkalos challenged the conservatives to submit a vote of no - confidence .

* Greece , Macedonia reach compromise deal in name dispute. Deputy Foreign Minister George Katrougkalos challenged the conservatives to submit a vote of no - confidence .

Zaev and Tsipras have agreed that the former Yugoslav republic should be renamed North Macedonia, ending a disagreement that had prevented it from joining international institutions such as NATO and had poisoned bilateral relations since the early 1990s.

But the dispute has roused strong nationalist sentiment in both countries. Critics on both sides of the border were furious, accusing their respective prime ministers of conceding too much.

Greece has long demanded that its northern neighbor change its name, saying the term "Macedonia" implies territorial claims on its own northern province of the same name, birthplace of the ancient warrior king Alexander the Great, and usurps ancient Greek heritage and history.

Greeks divided on proposed Macedonia name deal

  Greeks divided on proposed Macedonia name deal Greeks were divided Wednesday on a proposed compromise deal to end a nearly three-decade name row with Macedonia, with some questioning its benefits and others pointing out that obstacles remain. The leaders of the two countries said Tuesday that they had reached a "historic" solution to resolve the dispute and call the northern nation the Republic of North Macedonia after months of intensive diplomacy."A mutually beneficial deal creates a safe environment on our northern border.

The deal will open the way for Skopje’s eventual membership of NATO and the European Union, long blocked by Greece , which says use of the name “ Macedonia ” implies a territorial claim on a Deputy Foreign Minister George Katrougkalos challenged the conservatives to submit a vote of no - confidence .

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras may face a no confidence vote in parliament over his decision to finally sign on a deal that allowed neighboring Macedonia to keep its name , which is identical to a northern province in Greece .

Opponents in Greece object to any use of the term "Macedonia" in their northern neighbor's name.

Critics in Macedonia, meanwhile, see any modification of the country's name as a threat to their national identity.

In Athens, Tsipras faced a direct challenge to his left-led coalition government's survival after main opposition New Democracy submitted a motion later Thursday for a no-confidence vote.

"I have an obligation before the Greek people to try to avert the mortgaging of our country's future with an agreement that is detrimental to our national interests," New Democracy leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis said.

Tsipras has a four-seat majority in the 300-member parliament, but the name deal has led to a rift within the government itself. The stance of Defense Minister Panos Kammenos, who heads the coalition's junior partner, the right-wing Independent Greeks party, will be crucial.

North Macedonia Name Deal Hits Hurdles Right Out of the Gate

  North Macedonia Name Deal Hits Hurdles Right Out of the Gate Detractors in both countries mounted opposition to the accord. By agreeing to call the Balkan state of 2 million people "the Republic of North Macedonia," Prime Minister Zoran Zaev and his Greek counterpart Alexis Tsipras are seeking to unlock that country’s accession process to both the European Union and NATO. But they must find support at home in political environments that underscore a path fraught with obstacles.Macedonia’s President Gjorge Ivanov, who has veto power over legislation, denounced the agreement, saying it violated the constitution and hurt his country’s national interests.

Greek unions march in Athens against prior actions bill. Mitsotakis announces no - confidence motion over Athens-Skopje name deal . North Macedonia : gains, losses, and a precedent. FYROM president says he will not sign name deal with Greece .

The accord requires ratification by both countries' parliaments, and the junior partner in Greece 's coalition, the right wing Independent Greeks party, has said it does not back any deal that gives away the name Macedonia . NO - CONFIDENCE MOTION?

Kammenos said before the deal was announced that he would oppose the agreement in a parliamentary vote, which would leave Tsipras dependent on support from political opponents to ratify it in parliament. It is unclear, however, whether his objections to the Macedonia name deal would lead him to bring down the government by voting against Tsipras.

Protestors light torches, demonstrating against the change of the country's constitutional name in front of the Parliament building in Skopje, Macedonia, Wednesday, June 13, 2018. A historic deal ending a decades-long dispute between neighbors Greece and Macedonia over the latter's name met with mixed reactions in both countries Wednesday, with some welcoming the agreement and others horrified at what they see as unacceptable concessions. (AP Photo/Boris Grdanoski): Protesters light torches, demonstrating against the change of the country's constitutional name in front of the Parliament building in Skopje, Macedonia, Wednesday, June 13, 2018.  © The Associated Press Protesters light torches, demonstrating against the change of the country's constitutional name in front of the Parliament building in Skopje, Macedonia, Wednesday, June 13, 2018.  Tsipras has said he does not expect that to happen.

The debate on the motion began on Thursday evening, and a vote is expected by Saturday afternoon at the latest.

Meanwhile in Macedonia, Zaev was faced with a refusal by the country's president, Gjorge Ivanov, to sign off on the deal if it's ratified by parliament. Such a refusal would delay the implementation of the deal, which is expected to be signed this weekend.

If the president refuses to sign, the deal would return to parliament for another vote. Ivanov would have to sign off on the agreement if it is passed a second time.

Why all the furor over Macedonia name change? It goes back to Alexander the Great

  Why all the furor over Macedonia name change? It goes back to Alexander the Great Greek lawmakers debated a no-confidence motion against the government Friday over its preliminary agreement to end a long-running dispute with Macedonia over that country’s name. The Greek government is expected to survive the vote set for Saturday.  Outside parliament here, a couple hundred protested the agreement, which would rename Greece’s northern neighbor North Macedonia in exchange for Greece nixing its disapproval to Macedonia joining NATO and the European Union.So, why all the furor over a name? It goes back to Alexander the Great.

Greeks were divided Wednesday on a proposed compromise deal to end a nearly three-decade name row with Macedonia , with some However both governments have faced internal criticism over of the compromise, with the countries' main opposition parties saying they will not support it.

The accord requires ratification by both countries’ parliaments, and the junior partner in Greece ’s coalition, the right wing Independent Greeks party, has said it does not back any deal that gives away the name Macedonia . NO - CONFIDENCE MOTION?

"We are Macedonians and we are here just to maintain and preserve what our ancestors left us," Ivanov said during a visit to neighboring Bulgaria on Thursday. "I swore to preserve the Constitution of Macedonia and that is my obligation."

But the visit was overshadowed by the deal with Greece. Bulgaria's prime minister and foreign minister refused to hold meetings with Ivanov because of his opposition to the name deal.

And Bulgarian President Rumen Radev said after talks with Ivanov that, in the light of the deal with Greece, Bulgaria should seek to revise aspects of the friendship pact it signed with Macedonia last year.

Up to 1,500 people held a peaceful protest against the deal outside parliament in the Macedonian capital of Skopje late Wednesday, chanting "Traitors!" and blowing whistles. Greek opponents of the deal planned a protest in Athens on Friday, when Tsipras had been due to brief parliament on the name deal.

Jasmina Mironski in Skopje, Macedonia, and Nicholas Paphitis in Athens contributed.


Greek far-right lawmaker arrested on treason-linked charges .
Greek anti-terrorism police have arrested an extreme far-right lawmaker on treason-linked charges, more than two days after he evaded arrest by speeding past a series of police highway checkpoints. Constantinos Barbaroussis has been charged in Athens with committing preparatory acts for high treason over his exhortations last week for the armed forces to arrest the country's leadership, to hinder a deal with neighboring Macedonia over that country's name.Load Error

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