A total of 69 Macedonian lawmakers in the 120-strong parliament on July 5 approved the accord to rename the country North Macedonia.

Legislators from the main opposition party, VMRO-DPMNE, abstained from the vote in protest at the agreement, which it described as “capitulation.”

‘The most important thing is that the deal does not jeopardize our independence,’ Foreign Minister Nikola Dimitrov said during the parliamentary debate.’On the contrary, [it] strengthens our independence by opening the doors to NATO and the European Union.'” (RFE/RL)