Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama expressed hope that North Macedonia will support in the parliament the “French” proposal to end the dispute with Bulgaria, because otherwise he will demand “the very next day” that his country be separated on the way to the EU from “Bulgarian – the Macedonian file”.
“We are definitely convinced that Albania should start the negotiations this year without discussion,” Rama said at a press conference with EU enlargement commissioner Oliver Varhei, quoted by Channel 5.
Rama, who a few weeks ago sharply attacked Bulgaria because of North Macedonia’s veto, yesterday asked the Macedonian parliament to “pave the way for the proposal of France and the two countries to enter into negotiations”.
Tirana is “in a package” with Skopje in the course of negotiations with the European Union, which is why it has not been able to start them in the last year and a half after Bulgaria blocked the approval of North Macedonia’s negotiating framework in November 2020. With the adoption of the “French ” proposal the de facto veto will be able to be withdrawn.
According to the Bulgarian Foreign Ministry, the way in which the proposal is formulated suggests that Albania and North Macedonia will actually separate on the path of European integration, as Skopje will have an additional intergovernmental conference, at which it will be presented with the framework together with the request that the Bulgarians be written into the constitution, and only after completing the process will he negotiate on the merits.
In the EU, there was no consensus on the separation of Albania and North Macedonia, and some leaders and experts described it as dangerous because, in the context of an ongoing dispute, it could deepen Macedonian isolation.
Photo: Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama with his Macedonian colleague Dimitar Kovachevski / Reuters