The Macedonian Tendency: VINOZHTO’s Position on the Name Issue

Friday, June 17, 2005

VINOZHTO’s Position on the Name Issue

It is great that we have an organizatoin like Vinozhto working for the Macedonian cause. It would be great if they could publish correspondence from institutions like the the EU, UN, amd Mathew Nimetz. We always hear that they are meeting "so and so" but we very rarely have a report of what exactly happened at the meeting. For example, has Nimetz ever publicly discussed the status of Macedonians in Greece? We don't know.

VINOZHTO’s Position on the Name Issue: "VINOZHTO’s Position on the Name Issue

June 11, 2005

Taken (in part) from an interview with Pavle Voskopoulos from the political party VINOZHITO which aired Saturday morning June 11, 2005, on CHKT 1430 on the United Macedonia, Macedonian radio program.

Q. In the last few weeks the Macedonian Government was in talks with Greece about Greece adopting the name “Republika Makedonija-Skopje” for our country in bilateral agreements with the Greeks while world organizations use the name “Republic of Macedonia”.

What is your position as a political party with regards to this issue?

Pavle. With regards to this question and within our means we have taken steps to intervene and inform all relevant official institutions.

VINIZHITO is a member of the European Free Alliance and through this party we have taken steps to protect the interests of the Macedonian minority in Greece.

The solution to this problem lies strictly within the political structures of the Republic of Macedonia. They are the elected representative body of the Macedonian people responsible for solving the problem which Greece created.

VINOZHITO does not want to interfere in Macedonia’s affairs, we are not citizens of that state and we cannot be directly responsible for making decisions regarding this problem. When, however, there are talks about the Macedonian question, specifically about the identity of the Macedonian people and the name, we are obligated to voice our concerns.

VINOZHITO’s position is that every person, every individual, every people collectively has the absolute right to self-determination in accordance with international law and human rights conventions. It is the same for people collectively as it is for individuals. How and what Macedonians call themselves is their absolute right and nobody, no others have the right by force or otherwise to impose their own interests on them.

VINOZHITO’s position has been to inform our partners in the European Parliament, in the European Union Committee for External Affairs, in the European Union Commission for External Affairs, in the United Nations, including Matthew Nimetz and other official bodies.

The heart of the problem in this issue is not about the name. The name is only a superficial problem created by the Greek side. The real problem is about the existence of the Macedonian minority inside Greece, which at the moment is not recognized and has no minority rights.

If Greece was sincere about the name they would have said, “We don’t want this country to be called Macedonia because there is already a Macedonian minority living inside Greece and we are afraid that tomorrow or at some later time, this minority will exhibit separatist desires or some other desires.”

If Greece admitted to having a Macedonian minority living inside its borders, then it would be obligated to recognize it with full rights and privileges in accordance with agreements it has signed. This is why Greece is not being sincere but instead is carrying on with superficial concerns like “the name is Greek”, “history is Greek” and that people will get confused with the Republic of Macedonia and Macedonia and other superficial nonsense..

Our (VINOZHITO’s) position is clear and to the point and we have informed everyone we could within our sphere of influence."

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