Turkey supports NATO bid of Skopje, says PM
ISTANBUL- Hürriyet Daily NewsTurkey is the only country who is standing honorably alongside Macedonia, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said today, slamming the decision of the countries that blocked the country’s bid to join NATO because of its name.
“What is your name? Greece. Its name is Macedonia. Why do you insist on blocking its membership to NATO. We told them clearly, to the Greek prime minister and ministers. We said: ‘You are doing wrong. You cannot punish the Macedonian people by looking at its name.’ Our struggle continues.” Greece alleges that the use of the name Macedonia suggests a territorial claim to the northern Greek province of the same name while Skopje maintains that changing the name would be a denial of its own national identity and language. Macedonia lodged a complaint before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) shortly after NATO was forced to turn it down for membership because of Greece’s objection in 2008.