“We are focused on finding a solution to the name dispute by the end of June, in order to turn things around, so in July, Macedonia can receive an invitation to join NATO, said Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense, Radmila Šekerinska at a meeting with journalists ahead of her official visit to the United States which lasts from April 26 to May 2, at the invitation of the US Secretary of Defense, James Mattis.

She pointed out that Macedonia can not become a member at this moment, but that it is possible for the country to receive an invitation from NATO, this year.

“It is important that the negotiation process with Greece succeed. I would like to emphasize that in such a case, Macedonia will not become a NATO member in July, but will only receive an invitation for membership, followed by the ratification process. This means that our southern neighbor will have another opportunity to block our membership if we do not reach a solution to the name dispute. Any postponement of the decision is to our disadvantage, because the timing is so important. Next year, Macedonia will hold presidential elections, and in Greece there will be European elections, therefore I think that we should make every effort to reach a solution”, said Šekerinska.” (Meta)

“The US State Department gives unreserved support for Macedonia’s Euro-Atlantic future, after the country received an unconditional recommendation from the European Commission to start EU membership negotiations.

Asked by MIA, the United States assessed the efforts of the new Macedonian government for deeper reforms and democratization of society, the State Department said the United States continues to work with Macedonia on these challenges.

“We are working with the Government to implement judicial reforms and the rule of law, freedom of the media and responsible governance. The United States remains a faithful friend and partner of Macedonia and we support the country’s Euro-Atlantic future, ” stated the State Department.” (Meta)

“If you’ve ever been to a traditional Greek celebration, you will have seen people joining hands and dancing in a circle following the same steps to the accompaniment of live music. You will also have heard songs sung in Greek as most traditional tunes go hand in hand with lyrics talking about love, emigration and rural life.

In the northernmost parts of the Greek regions of Western and Central Macedonia, however, all the folk dances are instrumental tunes. Lyrics have been replaced by loud, brass and woodwind instruments like the cornet, the trombone and the clarinet. This is not some peculiar aspect of the local musical heritage. Traditional tunes in these regions had their own words – but they were in a language that the Greek state has tried to wipe out for nearly a century: Macedonian Slavic.” (The Conversation)