Sunday, 24 October 2021 | News today: 0

Zaev responds to Karakacanov saying that he is a Macedonian and he speaks Macedonian

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Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev today responded to Bulgarian Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Krasimir Karakacanov, who warned Zaev that Bulgaria will not support Macedonia’s EU and NATO membership if Zaev continues to insist that he speaks in the Macedonian language, separate from the Bulgarian.

– It is my right to say that I’m a Macedonian and that I speak the Macedonian language. It is a European value. I truly expect that European values will be accepted by all, just as I offered my hand and accepted that we share a common history. I will continue to speak in the spirit of friendship and I will continue to build friendship, regardless of the reasons someone has to make his statements. I believe that both Mr. Karakacanov and Minister Zaharieva, and Prime Minister Borisov, and especially the Bulgarian people, are a friendly people to our people, Zaev said during a debate on the proposed constitutional amendments which would rename Macedonia into North Macedonia.

Karakacanov said that the Macedonians will need to become “good Bulgarians”, while Zaharieva lamented that it will take time to “reverse the brainwashing” which she said Macedonians endured in Yugoslav times to forget that they are actually Bulgarians. Zaev and Borisov signed a treaty which Bulgaria said is a condition to allow the EU and NATO integration of Macedonia, but different articles of the treaty caused problems between the countries, and Bulgarians also got annoyed after Zaev said that, once Macedonia joins the EU, the Macedonian language will become an official EU language, separate from the Bulgarian.

– We signed a treaty on friendship with Bulgaria and the two countries shook hands and acknowledged that a portion of our histories is shared. But the treaty also allows that we mutually respect the two sides, Zaev said.

Meanwhile, Greek politicians were also angry at Zaev over his statement that that Prespa treaty he concluded with Alexis Tsipras will finally allow Macedonians living in Greece to get their public education in the Macedonian language. Greeks angrily reject the very existence of the Macedonian minority in its northern region.