Now is the right time to resolve the outstanding issues between Bulgaria and Macedonia, if that does not happen in the near future the dispute could escalate into a “frozen conflict,'” Foreign Minister Bujar Osmani said in an interview with Bulgarian television BTV.
I think that in the future there will be less and less strength and energy and courage for any politician to deal with this topic bravely. That is why I am afraid that in a month or two this will turn into a frozen conflict that will last for years, with all the consequences that will arise from our relations, our internal policy and the opportunities for the region. I am convinced that in the second half of this year we will not have the same strength to be fully committed, with all the energy of the government, to resolving this issue, as we are doing now, Osmani said.
According to him, if this opportunity is missed, constructive work will continue on this topic, but he also emphasizes that in that case the Government will have to deal with other issues in our country.
In the BTV interview, Minister Osmani also referred to the event in Bitola regarding the opening of the club of the Bulgarian association “Vanco Mihajlov”. Asked whether due to the name of the club in Bitola and the reactions of the public, the relations between the two countries were disrupted, he said that there was a decline in trust, assessing that work should be done to restore it.
When you enter the Bulgarian club in Bitola, there is a large sign at the main entrance with a quote from Vanco Mihajlov, which reads: “The efforts of the so-called Macedonian people to lie to the world are in vain.” This is a great insult to our citizens, this is a great insult to the people I represent. This is considered a provocation in our country, said Osmani in the interview.
Osmani says that he does not believe that the Bulgarian authorities were present in Bitola because of this message from Mihajlov, but also pointed out that if the club did not bear this name, the state leadership of Macedonia would be present at the event in Bitola.