Dr Charles Tannock

Member of the European Parliament for London

Enlargement Commissioner-designate calls for name row settlement

BSANNA News - 13 January 2010

European Enlargement Commissioner-designate Stefan Fuele called on Skopje and Athens Tuesday to use the opportunity for settling the name dispute, thus enabling for Macedonia's EU accession talks to kick off.

- Complicated negotiations have been led under UN aegis. The European Union fully supports the UN and (its mediator Matthew) Nimetz. I hope for the both parties to take advantage of this open opportunity. You know that the European Commission recommended opening of negotiations with FYR Macedonia and I hope that it will happen soon, Fuele told to British MEP Charles Tannock, who wanted to know how the future enlargement commissioner would help to settling 'the comic FYROM-Macedonia issue."

During a hearing at the European Parliament, Fuele failed to respond to Slovene MEP Zoran Taler, who wanted to know if the commissioner-designate was planning to visit Skopje and Athens soon and whether Macedonia's setting aside from the EU could be a threat to the Western Balkans' security.

Fuele however offered assistance to the name row settlement if required, saying he would discuss the matter with new EU foreign, security policy chief Catherine Ashton.

EU will keep urging Western Balkan countries to conduct the necessary reforms for their membership, Fuele said, adding that he wanted the EU to invite new members in the next five years.