Saturday, September 16, 2006

Macedonia hopeful to enter NATO in 2009

Macedonia could receive an invitation for NATO membership on the Alliance's summit scheduled for 2008, said sources in Macedonian Foreign Ministry, who insisted on remaining anonymous.

According to them, the closing document of the forthcoming summit in Riga will probably encourage the country that its future lies within NATO, and also possible is announcement for enlargement on the summit.

Sources from the Ministry add that even if Macedonia would receive the invitation for membership in 2008, the official membership would come on the 60th anniversary of the Alliance, on the summit scheduled for 2009 in Washington.

FM says that the Annual National Programme, that will officially be presented at 6 October, also contains items that should be implemented, and which are demanded by NATO and the European Union.

The programme, with marks the country's eighth cycle of NATO approximation programs, pays special attention to the combat against corruption, judiciary reforms, as well as the new Law on Police, that is yet to be adopted by the Parliament.

Besides that, FM also announces stronger lobbying abroad for the country's accession to NATO and that there are already positive signs from some countries - members of the Alliance.

Same sources say that the direct involvement of the Prime Minister in the Committee for Macedonia's NATO accession will bring greater importance to the process.

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