Greece's decision to veto an invitation to Macedonia to join NATO is "an irresponsible act motivated by its refusal to recognize the existence of a distinct Macedonian ethnic identity in the Republic of Macedonia as well as in Greece," EFA said.
The European Free Alliance (EFA) strongly condemns Greece's decision last week to veto an invitation to the Republic of Macedonia to join NATO. While EFA is appalled at Greece's decision, it is hardly surprising.
"Shameful decision to veto the Republic of Macedonia is a continuation of Greece's destabilizing behaviour in South Eastern Europe. Greece's decision was an irresponsible act motivated by its refusal to recognize the existence of a distinct Macedonian ethnic identity in the Republic of Macedonia as well as in Greece."
"This reckless and unfriendly act by Greece is not in accordance with the principles that a European country is supposed to espouse. The decision of the Karamanlis government to deny a country entry into Euro-Atlantic structures because of an absurd objection to the country's rightful name is highly irresponsible and an anti-European act," EFA said in a statement.
It is common knowledge that the source of Greece's behaviour on this issue is its continual and blatant refusal to recognize Macedonian identity, both in Greece and beyond. Indeed, Greece's aggressive behaviour on this issue is something not new to EFA.
The Rainbow, the party of Macedonians in Greece and member of EFA, called on the European Union to do more on these issues.
"It is time for the EU to do more on these issues. Being "UNITED in DIVERSITY" must not be simply declarative. The EU must be "UNITED in recognizing DIVERSITY". A good start would be to demands that Greece acts like 21st century European country and end its shameful and destabilizing policies on the Macedonian issue. In practice, this means recognizing the name of the Republic of Macedonia and recognizing the Macedonian and other minorities in Greece," Rainbow said.