Stoltenberg: Macedonia cannot join NATO without name change

cna t8b7bf7f6749543dc9414ac6065f1346f NATO, FYROM, Skopje

Macedonia cannot become a member of NATO unless it changes its name and ratifies the agreement with Greece, the NATO secretary general said today at the Brussels Summit.

"It is a unique opportunity for the people of Macedonia and it is their decision," said Jens Stoltenberg, adding that if the people of Macedonia do not support the name deal, the country will not join NATO. "There is no other way than to change the name of the country," said Stoltenberg. He stressed that accession talks with NATO are starting, but that all national processes need to be completed, including changing the country's constitution, in order to implement the agreement reached with Athens and then NATO to call on the country to become the 30th member of the Alliance.