Friday, July 06, 2018

Macedonian president adamantly against name deal with Greece

SKOPJE, MACEDONIA — Macedonia's president is insisting that he will not sign off on a deal with Greece to change his country's name, even after parliament ratified the agreement for a second time.

Gjorge Ivanov says the deal for Macedonia to be renamed "North Macedonia" is unconstitutional. The conservative main opposition party to which he belongs also opposes the agreement, saying it concedes too much to Greece,

A press release from Ivanov's office Friday said his position "will not be changed by any pressure, blackmail and threats."

Under Macedonia's constitution, Ivanov can only reject legislation approved by parliament once. But he must approve it if lawmakers back it again — as happened on Thursday with the name deal.

However, Ivanov might indefinitely delay signing off on the deal, triggering a constitutional crisis.

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