• Saturday, 13 July 2024

Osmani: Incoming government has no responsibility for Prespa Agreement but obligation to respect it

Osmani: Incoming government has no responsibility for Prespa Agreement but obligation to respect it

Skopje, 13 June 2024 (MIA) - The Prespa Agreement is much more than a name accord, it is a strategic partnership treaty. The pillar of Greece's obligations is its support to our NATO and European integration. The incoming government has no responsibility regarding the Prespa Agreement. They did not vote for it, they did not support it, but are obligated to respect it. This is what statehood attitude means, said Foreign Minister Bujar Osmani on Thursday.

At the sidelines of the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) ministerial meeting in Skopje, FM Osmani met with Greece's Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Alexandra Papadopoulou and had a phone call with Greek counterpart Giorgos Gerapetritis earlier in the day.

"We discussed the countries' commitment to the implementation of agreements and Greece's support for North Macedonia's European integration. We had a good, constructive talk and exchanged opinions on the importance of regional cooperation, goodneighborly relations, continuation of sectoral cooperation, and the fact that the Prespa Agreement is much more than a name accord. Of course, this is the main aspect but it is also a treaty for strategic partnership. Today, Greece controls our sky alongside with Italy, as part of the NATO arrangement," Osmani told reporters.

The phone call also referred to the remaining obligations of the countries within the Prespa Agreement, expressing hope that the strategic partnership would strengthen further through improved regional trust.

FM Osmani also expressed hope that the incoming government would also respect obligations arising from international agreements at a reciprocal basis.

According to him, it is not fair to say that Greece has not fulfilled anything from the Prespa Agreement, noting that its main obligation was support to NATO and European integration, which it has done, whereas the protocols have to be ratified in Greek parliament, the same as North Macedonia's Parliament should adopt the laws on the Macedonian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Macedonian Ratio Television and other issues related to the name implementation.

"Both sides have fulfilled the essential aspects of the Prespa Agreement and I hope the remaining tasks will be observed and should not represent an obstacle for implementation of the strategic partnership agreement," said Osmani.

He added that both governments would work towards stimulating the two parliaments to adopt those laws, but these issues should not be on the front line of bilateral relations.

Asked if there are any announcements over a veto from Greece, the FM said there is no such option, with both sides expressing hope that obligations would be honored.

On the possibility of the next prime minister not using the constitutional name, Osmani said he did not expect any violation of the agreement.

"I would not speculate, we will see in a week from now. According to announcements, I do not expect any violations. Of course, the use of another name when speaking and another in writing is not an explanation. There is no such thing in international law, but I expect this is just a transition in order to prepare the public. We encourage the Prespa Agreement's observance. They have no responsibility regarding the Prespa Agreement, they did not vote for it, they did not support it, but are obligated to respect it. This is what statehood attitude means," underlined Osmani.

Photo: MIA