Kammenos: I will try to block the Greece-Macedonia name agreement

Kammenos: I will try to block the Greece-Macedonia name agreement

 The deal to end the name dispute between Greece and Macedonia is in danger after the Greek defense minister's statement, who said that he will try to block it.

The statement also highlights the fragility of Greece's ruling coalition, a year before the election.

With a small majority in parliament, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras will need support from seven lawmakers of Minister Panos Kamenos for the name agreement to be ratified.

But Tuesday at a press conference, the Defense Minister Panos Kammenos said he rejects the agreement to name the former Yugoslav Republic as the "Northern Macedonia".

"For me it's a bad deal, I do not accept it, and I will try to block it," he said.

These were his first comments since the signing of the controversial agreement on June 17.

The agreement will not be filed for ratification by the Greek Parliament before the end of the year.

Mr Cipras's coalition is now supported by only 152 lawmakers in the 300-seat parliament, as two deputies of the right-wing, the Independent Greeks of Kamenyos resigned from the party last month.

But the agreement to use the name "Northern Macedonia", which should be ratified by both countries, was badly received on both sides of the border. In Skopje, Macedonian President Gjorge Ivanov is threatening to veto the parliamentary process, considering this name change as a "criminal act".

"We will not allow this agreement, without the approval of the Greek people, which is done in two ways, either by elections or by referendum," Kamenos said on Tuesday.

Mr. Kamenos's party is in the coalition with Cipras's left-wing Syriza since 2015. With elections expected before the end of 2019, the administration is weak based on opinion polls, this is partly because of the economic reforms.
Kammenos: I will try to block the Greece-Macedonia name agreement Kammenos: I will try to block the Greece-Macedonia name agreement  Tuesday, July 03, 2018 Rating: 5
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