Our relationship with Bulgaria changed when the country violated Article 2 of the Friendship Treaty, which specifies that Sofia will assist our European path, won’t hinder or block us. Since, we saw two vetoes and issues over our language. No progress can be made with blackmail. There’s need for mutual trust and respect in order achieve progress in dialogue over issues, Deputy PM for European Affairs Nikola Dimitrov said on Friday.

He added that “the major problem for progress in both the history talks and the other issues where we have differences is the atmosphere of blackmail.”

There must be mutual respect, there must be greater understanding of the other’s sensitivity. Intimacy and friendship cannot be created without such elementary respect and intimacy and friendship can never be created with blackmail, Dimitrov emphasized after the signing of the Memorandum on the trilateral project for promotion of digitalization in Macedonia.

Asked about the statement by the new US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Gabriel Escobar that there are other ways to resolve the issue without blocking Macedonia’s EU integration, Ambassador Kate Marie Byrnes said Escobar reiterated US policy on long-term value, ie support for the country’s EU integration.

We see Macedonia’s future in the EU and reaffirm the importance of resolving the issues and hope it will continue until the end of the year. We continue to talk to all partners, we have talks with the Government here in Skopje, talks with neighboring countries and throughout Europe to make sure we do everything we can to support moving the process forward. I have no concrete announcement at this time, except to confirm that the United States will get involved in this issue and in the talks because we all share the same vision – Macedonia to take its rightful place in Europe and the EU and we hope it will be soon, said Byrnes.

She reiterated that she did not want to speculate about a plan she had not heard of.

It is very clear that the role of the United States is that we have an interest and consider Macedonia as a strategic partner just like the EU. However, this is not a situation that the United States will address directly. So stay away from bad information, said US Ambassador Byrnes.