The European Union’s (EU) ambassador to Skopje, David Gere, called on the country’s authorities to resolve the dispute with Bulgaria so that accession talks can begin.
“Where are we at the moment? There is a proposal from the Portuguese presidency that aims to move the process forward. There is some progress, but we have to move towards that goal. At the same time, there are constructive discussions between Sofia and Skopje. You need to focus on the real opportunities and bilateral relations between RS Macedonia and Bulgaria in order to make progress,” Gere said.
“These are the rules of the game. It must be understood that this is an invitation to a third country to join the club. To sit at the table and make decisions”.
“This topic is very important,” said the ambassador, referring to Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev’s statement that “Europe has a problem stemming from the EU itself. “
“PCM and Bulgaria must continue the dialogue. It is very important that both countries continue their efforts to resolve the issue. Bilateral issues are open. In this situation, as in the past, we encourage both sides to resolve these issues bilaterally.”
“This is not the first time this has happened with the membership of a country that has bilateral disputes that have been resolved and then the countries concerned have become members of the EU. I am convinced that this issue can be resolved and we will see the PCM as EU member,” Gere told local TV Sitel.
The ambassador stressed that the EU’s strategic goal is for the PCM to be part of the European Union. Gere called on the authorities in Skopje to continue with the reforms, as this would ensure the start of accession talks.