Prime Minister Zoran Zaev, following the EU-Western Balkans Summit that took place in Brdo near Kranj, Slovenia, said that the steps and blockades taken by Bulgarian President Rumen Radev are an insult to Macedonian citizens.

Zaev said that after the Summit it was clear that only Bulgaria was opposed to our country’s EU integration, and that he was not sure that Radev understood the message from French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

We have another strong confirmation that only one EU member state opposes our integration and the start of EU accession negotiations. Unfortunately, to my great disappointment and to all our citizens, the blockade comes from our neighbor Bulgaria. The messages from President Macron and Chancellor Merkel are clear: One needs to look to the future, not dig into the past to find solutions. But, unfortunately, I am not sure that President Radev understood that message. The steps and blockades that Radev is taking on behalf of Bulgaria are an insult to the Macedonian citizens. The Macedonian people with all their peacefulness cannot justify the blockades. My people gave me a mandate to create solutions, but they did not give me a mandate to justify policies from the last century, said Zaev.

In the statement, the Prime Minister stressed that there is no member state that has any remarks on our country’s reforms and that our EU integration progress should primarily depend on domestic reforms related to achieving European standards, and not on bilateral issues. He also sent a message that they are ready for talks with Sofia, but not about the Macedonian identity.