President Stevo Pendarovski dismissed the Bulgarian statement that was linked to the European Council decision to approve the opening of EU accession talks with Macedonia. While agreeing to the decision that again carries no actual date to open the talks, Bulgaria also submitted a statement in which it outlines lengthy demands it has from Macedonia, and also asked that Albania acknowledges that it has a Bulgarian minority.

The statement raised fears that Macedonia will be forced into additional humiliating concessions with its national identity before even allowing to open EU accession talks. The country was forced by its neighbors and international factors to rename itself, redefine the meaning of its national identity and begin rewriting the history of Macedonia. But Pendarovski assured the public that the Bulgarian statement is just the opinion of only one EU member state.

Regarding its content, I want to emphasize that this is a document that contains certain positions of one country, and is not the EU position. The EU positions are contained in the conclusions of the European Council and they are available for all to see, Pendarovski said.

Never the less, Greece blocked Macedonia’s NATO membership and opening of EU accession talks for years, even though it was just one member state. When imposing the name and identity change on Macedonia, Pendarovski insisted that Macedonia must accept all Greek demands as it has the right to veto any EU and NATO decisions.

Pendarovski especially objected to the Bulgarian claims that the Macedonian language should be refered to as “the official language of the Republic of North Macedonia”. Bulgaria considers the Macedonian language as a Bulgarian dialect.