Tsipras had accepted the “Republic of Ilinden”, but the deal did not proceed because there was a reaction of the opposition in Greece, Zoran Zaev said.
Zoran Zaev revealed that the reason he said ‘yes’ for the use of the term “Northern Macedonia” within his country, was that the SYRIZA government accepted the “Macedonian identity”.
His statement was made during the debate between himself and the leader of the opposition party VMRO-DPMNE Kristo Mitsoski.
In the same debate Zaev also said that Alexis Tsipras had accepted his proposal for the name “Republic of Ilinden”, but, he said, it was rejected by the Greek opposition, with the result that the agreement would not proceed.
Zoran Zaev also referred to the “Macedonian language” and “Macedonian identity”, which he said “shines at the UN”. “The inscription of ‘Macedonian language’ and ‘Macedonian identity’ shine at the UN where they were posted without asterisks and footnotes. ‘Macedonian language’ is the language of ‘Macedonians’ in Australia, America, Canada, Switzerland, Germany and no one denies it”, he said.
Kristo Mitsoski has pushed several times, as liberal.gr writes, Zaev to answer the question of whether non-Greek Macedonians live in Greece and which languages are spoken in Greek Macedonia. However, Mr Zaev refused to answer in order to avoid being accused of violating the Prespes Agreement. “I will not be dragged by Mr Mitsoski to confront Greece”, he said.
According to voria.gr, Zoran Zaev strongly defended the Prespes Agreement, noting that it opens the way for the accession of his country to NATO and the EU, while Mitsoski reiterated allegations of an agreement that goes against the national interests of the country.
However, in persistent questions from the presenter of the debate and also from Zaev himself, Mitsoski refused to answer if he will honour the Prespes Agreement or not in case his party comes to power.