Greece, North Macedonia open embassies after name deal

International

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greece has upgraded its diplomatic mission to North Macedonia’s capital of Skopje to an embassy, following a deal to normalize relations with its neighbor — which renamed itself from Macedonia.

A foreign ministry statement says Greece is also upgrading its representation in North Macedonia’s southern town of Bitola to a general consulate.

Friday’s statement added that North Macedonia has upgraded its mission in Athens to an embassy and in the northern Greek city of Thessaloniki to a general consulate.

The two countries this year ended a decades-long dispute over Greece’s neighbor’s name. Athens long claimed that plain “Macedonia” implied claims on its own northern region of the same name and on ancient Greek heritage.

The deal cleared the way for North Macedonia to join NATO and, potentially, the European Union.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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