Sunday, 16 December 2018 | News today: 2

Zaev: License plates NMK to avoid any provocations in Greece

The international codes for the country remain MK and MKD, while license plates will change into NMK, Prime Minister Zoran Zaev told reporters on Tuesday regarding the practical implementation of the name deal.

“NMK will be put on the license plates to avoid any provocations,” said PM Zaev, with the abbreviation referring to name Republic of North Macedonia.

According to him, the agreement will be valid once it is ratified by both parliaments, following the referendum and constitutional changes.

Regarding the way in which the new name is to be introduced for internal use, Zaev explained that it would be used as each EU accession charter is opened.

“The new name will be introduced through the opening of each chapter, no later than five years. For example, when opening the education chapter no later than five years, the diplomas from our universities will change. A part of the internal changes cannot be encompassed by the chapters, meaning that internal use will eventually apply by the country’s NATO full-fledged membership,” added Zaev.

He clarified that the ‘Macedonian’ adjective would be used for everything that originates from the identity and the language, while the new name would be official for all aspects related to state institutions.

“By accepting the constitutional revision and ratification of the agreement, this government will be the Government of the Republic of North Macedonia, but we will speak of a Macedonian Government,” said Zaev.

Asked about Greece’s concessions in the process of negotiations, the PM highlighted the acceptance of the Macedonian identity and the Macedonian language.

“These are their concessions. We have separated the Hellenic and our Macedonia,” said Zaev.

He stressed on several occasions that citizens would have the final say at a referendum, which would be mandatory for state institutions.

Pertaining to the selection of adjective North ahead of the other alternatives, Zaev noted “there are ‘north’ countries, no ‘upper’ ones, while ‘new’ sounds as if we were created yesterday”.

PM Zaev has already briefed VMRO-DPMNE leader Hristijan Mickoski over the deal, while a meeting with President Gjorge Ivanov is scheduled for Wednesday.