Bulgaria Reiterates Hardened Stance on Macedonia
Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov has reiterated that Macedonia needs to improve its relations with its neighbors in order to clear its way towards EU integration.
Borisov's statement came after a meeting with his Greek counterpart Andonis Samaras in Greece.
The Bulgarian PM noted that his country has decisively backed the EU integration efforts of all Balkan states.
"The faster the Balkan countries enter NATO and the EU, the better it would be for peace and prosperity on the Balkan peninsula," he stated.
However, he declared that the existence friendly neighborly relations is crucial for Bulgaria.
Commenting on controversial Macedonian movie "Third Halftime" that recently presented a skewed interpretation of the events of World War II and incited hatred against Bulgaria, Borisov reminded that Bulgaria was the only country that rescued 50 000 Jews from Nazi concentration camps during World War II.
Last week, the European Council for General Affairs adopting the Bulgarian proposal tabled by Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladenov to delay giving a EU negotiations date for Macedonia.
Bulgaria's move was backed by Borisov and President Rosen Plevneliev, who had long expressed strong concerns regarding the rights of ethnically Bulgarian Macedonians and what they see as a general anti-Bulgarian rhetoric on the part of authorities in Skopje.
In past months, Plevneliev and Foreign Affairs Minister Mladenov have upped the rhetoric against a perceived "anti-Bulgarian campaign" carried out by authorities in Skopje.
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