Matthew Nimetz, former personal envoy of the UN Secretary-General on the name issue, which was finally solved through the Prespa Agreement, once made the point to both parties that the whole name dispute was actually a dispute about the English language but was roundly criticized for that comment.
He also used the example of Georgia the nation in the Caucasus, and Georgia the state in the southern United States, bu the Greek negotiator countered the two Georgias are in different continents and in any case didn’t fight each other in the Balkan Wars.
In an analysis for Nationalities Papers, an academic magazine released by Cambridge University for the Association for the Study of Nationalities, Nimetz gives a detailed overview of the dispute and its resolution.
All those who observed the name dispute of Macedonia or were informed about the process from time to time saw it as something strange and illogical, but Nimetz emphasizes that those who were directly involved in the process could understand that this is an issue that affects the core of the identity and national sense of security of those affected.
The people of this former Yugoslav republic speak Macedonian, are called Macedonians, and in a referendum adopted a Constitution calling their country the Republic of Macedonia. The next step for this new Balkan state was recognition at the UN as one of the successor states of Yugoslavia and international recognition, Nimetz wrote.