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Enlargement chief urges FYROM and Greece to agree on 'Macedonia'

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Enlargement chief urges FYROM and Greece to agree on 'Macedonia'

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A further impulse to resolve a 19-year old dispute over the use of the name Macedonia: EU enlargement chief Stefan Fuele, after meeting Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski in Skopje, has said the Greek and Macedonian leaders have a huge responsibility to contribute to a wider regional stability.

Macedonia the country was a part of Yugoslavia before independence in 1991, while Greece has a northern province called Macedonia, and considers the name to be part of its heritage.

Provisionally named the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), the new state joined the United Nations in 1993.

The European Commission next month will discuss a timeline for opening the country’s EU membership negotiations. The decision to start talks needs all the EU states’ approval, including Greece. A UN mediator will visit Skopje and Athens next week.