The Macedonian Tendency: Emigres Take Battle Over Macedonia’s Name to America

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Emigres Take Battle Over Macedonia’s Name to America

As articles on the Greek- Macedonian dispute go, I've seen worse. It was done by a university student and reprinted by BIRN, a pseudo-human rights group, which would never have published it had it contained references to Macedonians in Greece. Hard to break through this vast conspiracy.

Emigres Take Battle Over Macedonia’s Name to America

18 04 2007 When it comes to taking up a hard-line position, no one equals the Greek Americans or their Macedonian counterparts.

By Amanda Rivkin in New York (Balkan Insight, 18 April 07)

UN gift shop: FYR Macedonia key chains (OUCH!) - photo: Amanda Rivkin

Details matter in diplomacy, as His Excellency Igor Dzundev, Macedonian Ambassador to the United Nations, should know. His office at 866 UN Plaza, a non-descript building in Manhattan is the one place at the UN where the sign on the door reads Republic of Macedonia, as opposed to the UN-approved acronym, FYROM, short for Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

His office is a rare “safe haven” from this cumbersome-sounding term, because the UN inserts the two words Former Yugoslav before the name Republic of Macedonia for all official purposes. This two-word distinction is at the heart of a 14-year long dispute between Ambassador Dzundev’s country and its more powerful neighbor, Greece.

“Each delegation has its name plate on the desk and ours is the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia or FYROM,” said Dzundev of his plaque at the General Assembly. “We feel discriminated against because we are not allowed to be a member state there using our constitutional name,” he said, referring to the fact that the country calls itself the Republic of Macedonia in its constitution.

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