Vlado Buckovski, the former Prime Minister who Zaev appointed his envoy to Bulgaria, said that the resolution to the dispute is on the right track, but insisted that it will take more time. Bulgaria yesterday blocked the opening of EU accession talks with Macedonia at the level of EU ambassadors, and is expected to confirm this position early next week.

I’m convinced that we will find a solution, but not in seven days. It may take more time, but we are on the right track. Our committee is working hard and we have instruments through the Friendship treaty. From previous similar crisis situations, I know that the less we say on our part, the better. Being silent helps coming to the desired solution. And we will fight till the last minute, Buckovski said during a joint press conference with Foreign Minister Bujar Osmani.

Macedonia is relying on Germany to pressure Bulgaria, but this strategy is obviously creating a backlash in Bulgaria, where the smaller nationalist parties that support the Borisov Government see it as a chance to face off not just Macedonia but a strong European country as well.