The rally of tens of thousands of Greeks in Thessaloniki in protest of the use of the name Macedonia by FYROM drew the attention of international media outlets. Most reports focused on the fact that the Greeks were objecting to the use of the name Macedonia by FYROM, as the term is also used by Greece’s northern province of Macedonia.
New York Times
Tens of thousands of people gathered in Greece’s second city, Thessaloniki, on Sunday to protest the inclusion of the word “Macedonia” in the name of the neighbouring former Yugoslav republic amid talks by the two nations to resolve the longstanding dispute.
Drawing what the police estimated at 90,000 people, the rally was the first major protest since Greece and the Republic of Macedonia agreed to join United Nations-mediated talks this month to settle the 25-year disagreement. Organizers say further rallies are planned.
Many Greeks argue that the name Macedonia implies a territorial claim to a region in the north of Greece with the same name; Thessaloniki is its capital.
Tens of thousands of flag-waving Greeks gathered in the northern city of Thessaloniki on Sunday to demand that Macedonia change its name because it’s also the name of the Greek province of which Thessaloniki is the capital.
Greece and the Republic of Macedonia, which share a border, have been locked in the name dispute since Macedonia declared independence from Yugoslavia in 1991. Greeks feel deeply the use of the name Macedonia is a usurpation of their heritage and implies territorial claims on their province.
Hundreds of thousands of Greeks in the northern city of Thessaloniki rallied on Sunday to protest against the use of the name “Macedonia” in any solution to a row between Athens and Skopje over the name of the former Yugoslav republic.
Greece says the name Macedonia implies a territorial claim over its own northern region of that name. The two countries agreed this month to renew efforts to settle the 25-year old row, which has blocked the ex-Yugloslav republic’s attempts to join NATO and the European Union.
More than 100,000 Greeks have protested in the city of Thessaloniki to demand the country of Macedonia stops using the name.
The rally is part of a 27-year disagreement between the Greek province of Macedonia, of which Thessaloniki is the capital and the country of Macedonia.
In 1991 the country, neighbouring the province, became known as The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia – or FYROM – after declaring independence.