North Macedonia urged to amend constitution to include Bulgarian minority as precondition to European Union accession

By Oliver Noyan, 24 March 2023
Flag of North Macedonia (photo credit: dimitrisvetsikas1969 via pixabay)
Flag of North Macedonia (photo credit: dimitrisvetsikas1969 via pixabay)
Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock pledged her full support to North Macedonia’s bid to join the European Union, warning, however, that parties should not let politics get in the way of amending the Constitution, which is a precondition for accession. [...] The German foreign minister added that the Balkan state, which is already a NATO member, must change its constitution to solve the long-standing issue with neighbouring Bulgaria. The proposed amendment suggests adding a reference in its constitution to the existence of an ethnic Bulgarian minority. [...] This will not be an easy feat for the incumbent government as a constitutional amendment is unpopular in the country, and changes to the Constitution would need support from the opposition to reach the required two-thirds majority in parliament. However, the largest opposition party VMRO-DPMNE is highly critical of the amendment and stressed that it would never support the move. To ease tensions, Baerbock also met with the VMRO-DPMNE party leader in Skopje. The German government has focused more on the Western Balkans over fears of a potential Russian influence in the region and is supporting the accession of the candidate countries in the Western Balkans.
Read the full article here: Euractiv


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