Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov said that he is satisfied with Macedonian President Stevo Pendarovski and how he acknowledged that legendary VMRO hero Goce Delcev declared himself as Bulgarian. Pendarovski qualified the statement by adding that Delcev fought for a Macedonian state, but Bulgarian politicians expectedly seized on his comment.

We are satisfied that the truth about our shared history, including about Goce Delcev, is beginning to be uttered publicly by top politicians in Macedonia, such as the President of the country Stevo Pendarovski, Borisov told the Bulgarian BGNES station.

The two countries are locked in a dispute over Delcev’s national identity, at a time when all Balkan peoples were fighting for their own nation states. Macedonian historians in the joint committee set up to create a common historical narrative with Bulgaria, are insisting that Delcev was Macedonian, but Pendarovski undermined their positions.

Borisov met with Zoran Zaev during the Western Balkans summit in Poznan and this seemingly removed Bulgarian objections that hovered over Macedonia’s request to open EU accession talks in October. Zaev and Borisov agreed to jointly host the next Berlin process summit, and intend to jointly celebrate the coming Ilinden – August 2nd – the day of the Macedonian uprising against the Ottomans which Bulgaria also honors and considers a Bulgarian uprising. Macedonia is currently gripped by a controversy over the national anthem, when a singer which has supported the Zaev regime omitted to sing the lyrics naming Goce Delcev from the Macedonian anthem.