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Macedonia starts screening process for EU accession negotiations

Staff Writer |
Macedonia will begin the preparatory work for Macedonia's European Union (EU) accession negotiation on Sept. 27, Macedonian Deputy Prime Minister for European Affairs Bujar Osmani announced on Sunday.

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During a press conference, Osmani, said he will chair the Macedonian delegation in Brussels, which on Sept. 27 will begin screening for Chapter 23 - Judiciary and Fundamental rights.

According to Osmani, the Macedonia delegation will count about 40 people from the country's institutions.

A total of 33 delegations from Macedonia will visit Brussels until June 2019, when the screening process of all chapters ends, according to Osmani.

In April this year, Macedonia received a clear recommendation for the start of the EU membership negotiation.

On Sept. 30, Macedonia will hold a referendum on NATO and EU membership bids and on its agreement with Greece on the country's name.

Macedonian citizens will vote in the referendum on the question: "Are you in favor of NATO and EU membership, and accepting the name agreement between Macedonia and Greece?"

Macedonia is formally called the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) by the United Nations. Macedonia is also the name of a northern province in Greece. Athens is worried that the use of the same name by the neighboring state could lead to territorial claims.

The solving of the name row that has existed between two countries is seen as the main obstacle Macedonia has to overcome in order to make progress towards its European Union (EU) and NATO integration.

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