cloudy.png
Friday December 4th, 2020 9:05AM

Macedonian lawmakers set to vote to change country's name

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

SKOPJE, Macedonia (AP) — Macedonia's center-left government said Friday it has secured the required number of parliamentary votes to finalize constitutional changes that will rename the country North Macedonia and pave the way to NATO membership.

Macedonian lawmakers were convening later Friday to vote on the amendments, for which a super majority of two-thirds of the 120 members — or 80 votes — is required.

The name change follows an agreement with neighboring Greece, which in turn is bound by the terms of the deal to remove its objections to Macedonia joining NATO and then potentially the European Union.

Prime Minister Zoran Zaev's governing coalition needed opposition backing to get the required number of votes and had said Thursday it was struggling to achieve that after a small ethnic Albanian party raised last-minute objections.

In a joint press release, the government and a group of former opposition conservative lawmakers who had been wavering said the two-thirds majority had been secured. Earlier, a spokesman for the governing Social Democrats said the ethnic Albanian lawmakers had also agreed to back the deal.

Changing the name will bring an end to the 27-year dispute with Greece, which complained that the small landlocked country's current name implied claims on its own territory and cultural heritage, which Macedonia denied. The deal encountered strong opposition on both sides of the border, with critics saying it offered too many concessions to the other side.

Hundreds of Macedonian opposition supporters were protesting in front of the parliament for a third day Friday, demanding early elections and the dissolution of parliament.

Macedonian approval of the name change does not end the issue though. The Greek government is struggling to hold up its end of the bargain, and is struggling to secure the political support required to ratify the agreement reached last June.

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has said he wants to bring the deal — which has brought his coalition government to the brink of breakup — to parliament in coming weeks.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel expressed strong support for the agreement during a working visit to Athens Friday.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News, AP World News
© Copyright 2020 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
The Latest: 911 caller: Teen said suspect killed her parents
A woman who called 911 to report that a missing 13-year-old Wisconsin girl had been found says the girl told her that the man arrested in the case "killed my parents and took me"
12:08PM ( 15 minutes ago )
The Latest: Poland spying suspect held top cyber jobs
The Polish state news agency says a Polish man who has been charged with spying for China had held top cybersecurity positions at different state agencies
12:04PM ( 18 minutes ago )
US flu season appears milder, one year after brutal one
Officials the current flu season is shaping up to be milder, after last year's brutal one
12:04PM ( 19 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Bernie Sanders faces questions about political future
Bernie Sanders loyalists ponder fallout as harassment controversy persists
11:43AM ( 40 minutes ago )
Trump closer to declaring emergency; 800,000 won't get paid
President Donald Trump is edging closer to declaring a national emergency to fund his long-promised border wall
11:38AM ( 45 minutes ago )
Federal work at Superfund sites suspended during shutdown
The government shutdown has stopped federal work at Superfund sites across the U.S. unless it is determined there is an "imminent threat" to life or property.
11:17AM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
The Latest: PR rep says disaster aid should not pay for wall
Puerto Rico's representative in Congress says it is "unacceptable" for President Donald Trump to consider taking billions of dollars slated for disaster response in the U.S. territory to help build a border wall
8:24AM ( 3 hours ago )
EU official Juncker calls for extra push before Brexit vote
A top European Union official says the bloc is trying to help Britain's prime minister to avoid a no-deal departure of the U.K. from the bloc, but insists there cannot be any renegotiation of the draft Brexit deal
6:36AM ( 5 hours ago )
Trump administration eyes disaster money to fund border wall
The Trump administration is eyeing billions of dollars in unspent disaster relief funds to pay for President Donald Trump's border wall as he weighs signing a national emergency declaration to get it built without Congress
6:13AM ( 6 hours ago )
AP Online Congress News
The Latest: US withdrawal from Syria so far limited to cargo
A U.S. defense official says no American troops have withdrawn yet from Syria, but some military cargo has been pulled out
11:40AM ( 43 minutes ago )
US official says withdrawal from Syria has begun
After days of conflicting statements about Trump's Syria withdrawal, US military says it has begun to pull out equipment
11:33AM ( 50 minutes ago )
Thai police: Saudi asylum seeker is flying to Canada
Police in Thailand say a Saudi asylum seeker who fled alleged abuse by her family is leaving Bangkok and will fly to Canada
11:07AM ( 1 hour ago )
AP World News
The Latest: 911 caller: Teen said suspect killed her parents
A woman who called 911 to report that a missing 13-year-old Wisconsin girl had been found says the girl told her that the man arrested in the case "killed my parents and took me"
12:08PM ( 15 minutes ago )
The Latest: Poland spying suspect held top cyber jobs
The Polish state news agency says a Polish man who has been charged with spying for China had held top cybersecurity positions at different state agencies
12:04PM ( 18 minutes ago )
US flu season appears milder, one year after brutal one
Officials the current flu season is shaping up to be milder, after last year's brutal one
12:04PM ( 19 minutes ago )
Wisconsin man arrested in teen's abduction, parents' deaths
Authorities say they have jailed a 21-year-old man on kidnapping and homicide charges in the October killing of a Wisconsin couple and abduction of their teen daughter, who was found alive
11:59AM ( 24 minutes ago )
Gillibrand makes big moves toward 2020 campaign
Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand eyes Troy, New York, for 2020 campaign base
11:57AM ( 25 minutes ago )