Athens "irritated" with Belgrade "over Kosovo and Macedonia"

Greece is "irritated" by Serbia's position "regarding Kosovo and Macedonia," the Beta agency is quoting an article published on the SKAI website.

Source: Beta

The Greek media outlet quoted unnamed "foreign ministry circles" who said that "Serbia lately made a series of incomprehensible moves, exerting pressure in the European Union to settle the (Macedonian) name issue."

According to this, Athens is also troubled by "information about the alleged pressure on Greece to recognize Kosovo."

The article said that "due to recent provocative moves of Belgrade related to Kosovo and the FYROM (Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonian) name issue, Athens has already lodged official protests."

On the issue of Macedonia - which Serbia recognizes under its constitutional name of the Republic of Macedonia, while Skopje is a member of the UN as FYROM - SKAI said that "diplomatic factors stressed that Greece's European partners, despite Serbia's interventions, recognize Greece is approaching negotiations with willingness to compromise," and "stress that Skopje must overcome irredentist mentality and retreat from rigid positions that prevent agreement."

When it comes to Serbian reports about Greece's intentions regarding Kosovo - the unilaterally declared independence of which Athens does not recognize - "the Foreign Ministry circles stated that the policy of Athens is entirely about implementation of agreements signed between 2000 and 2013, which has been done for years, and which is absolutely known to the Serbian government."

The circles then "pointed out that in practice, Serbia has in fact sought closer relations with Kosovo, despite the public image it is creating on the home front."

The sources went on to say that "the recognition of Kosovo is not the issue of this moment - but Athens conducts its own foreign policy, guided by national interests."

The Greek Foreign Ministry officials "pointed out with dissatisfaction that Athens has for seven years supported Serbia's candidacy for EU membership, while Belgrade was quick to recognize FYROM based on narrow interests."

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