Zaev claims talks with Bulgaria not about Macedonian language and identity, but “Portuguese proposal”


The Macedonian language and identity are non-negotiable. We’ll discuss the proposal of Portugal’s EU Presidency, which pays equal attention to the Macedonian language and identity and Bulgaria’s position, Prime Minister ZoranZaev told reporters on Wednesday, ahead of his visit to Sofia on Thursday.

According to the Macedonian PM, the Portuguese proposal is an innovative and creative solution, worth putting effort in.

He also discussed realistic expectations from Thursday’s visit to Sofia.

“The Bulgarian government is willing to talk and we’ll use this opportunity to pay a visit and meet with the leaders of the largest political parties, the Prime Minister and the President, as well as with other important office holders,” Zaev stressed.

He praised the Portuguese proposal, adding that it pays attention to both sides.

“Our official position is that it’s a good foundation for finding a solution. Bulgaria agrees with this position and we have to take advantage of this. If we reach a solution, great. If not, then progress will surely be made for finding one once [Bulgaria] forms a political government,” the PM underlined.

The first chance for holding the intergovernmental conference is June 22, followed by June 24-25, when the European Council is taking place. Our next shot, Zaev pointed out, is the European Council on Western Balkans, scheduled for October 22, during Slovenia’s EU Presidency.

“We’ve proven that we deserve more. EU feels responsible for not delivering on promises, when we did. North Macedonia sets an example for multiethnic and multi-faith functional democracy, as well as for European dispute resolution and implementation of reforms. Our people deserve the first intergovernmental conference to be held, a half-step on our European integration path,” Zaev said.


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