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Macedonia set to join NATO

  • Category
    World Affairs
  • Published
    21st Feb, 2019
  • Macedonia signed an accession agreement with NATO, paving its way to join the alliance next year.
  • The country will be renamed as ‘Republic of North Macedonia’, to end one of the world’s longest diplomatic disputes between Greece and Macedonia.

Context

  • Macedonia signed an accession agreement with NATO, paving its way to join the alliance next year.
  • The country will be renamed as ‘Republic of North Macedonia’, to end one of the world’s longest diplomatic disputes between Greece and Macedonia.
  • The renaming accord subsequently paved the way for Macedonia to join NATO and the European Union.

About

Background

  • In 1995, the country joined the Partnership for Peace. It then began taking part in various NATO missions, including the 1999 NATO bombing of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Two years later, NATO intervened in the 2001 Macedonian insurgency.
  • At the 2008 Bucharest summit, Greece vetoed the country's invitation to join; however NATO nations agreed that the country would receive an invitation upon resolution of the Macedonia naming dispute.

Macedonia as Republic of North Macedonia

  • Macedonia, country of the south-central Balkans. It is bordered to the north by Kosovo and Serbia, to the east by Bulgaria, to the south by Greece, and to the west by Albania. The capital is Skopje.
  • The Republic of Macedonia occupies about two-fifths of the entire geographical region of Macedonia. The rest of the region belongs to Greece and Bulgaria.
  • Majority of the republic’s inhabitants are of Slavic descent and heirs to the Eastern Orthodox tradition of Christianity.
  • Around 500 years of incorporation into the Ottoman Empire led the influx of substantial numbers of other ethnic groups in Macedonia, including Albanians, Turks, Vlachs (Aromani), and Roma (Gypsies).
  • Consequently, Macedonia forms a complex border zone between the major cultural traditions of Europe and Asia.

    North Atlantic Treaty Organisation

    • Formed in 1949 with the signing of the Washington Treaty, NATO is a security alliance of 29 countries from North America and Europe.
    • NATO’s fundamental goal is to safeguard the Allies’ freedom and security by political and military means.
    • It is the practical means through which the security of North America and Europe are permanently tied together.
    • Article 5 of the Washington Treaty — that an attack against one Ally is an attack against all — is at the core of the Alliance, a promise of collective defense.
    • Article 4 of the treaty ensures consultations among Allies on security matters of common interest, which have expanded from a narrowly defined Soviet threat to the critical mission in Afghanistan, as well as peacekeeping in Kosovo and new threats to security such as cyber-attacks, and global threats such as terrorism and piracy that affect the Alliance and its global network of partners.
    • In addition to its traditional role in the territorial defense of Allied nations, NATO leads the UN-mandated International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan and has ongoing missions in the Balkans and the Mediterranean
    • Over the past two decades, the Alliance has developed a network of structured partnerships with countries from the Euro-Atlantic area, the Mediterranean and the Gulf region, as well as individual relationships with other partners across the globe.
    • Today, NATO pursues dialogue and practical cooperation with 41 partner countries and engages actively with other international actors and organisations on a wide range of political and security-related issues.
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