macedonia - updates

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North Macedonia PM calls for snap election after EU snub

Oct 19, 2019 - 8:24 PM

'We are victims of the EU's historic mistake,' says North Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev, after the European Union decided against membership talks

SNAP ELECTIONS. North Macedonia's Prime Minister Zoran Zaev on Saturday called for early elections after the European Union failed to open membership talks for his Balkan state, which had been the key goal of his administration. Photo by Robert Atanasovski/AFP

Anger over EU's 'historic mistake' on Skopje, Tirana

Oct 19, 2019 - 10:57 AM

French President Emmanuel Macron blocks talks on EU membership for North Macedonia and Albania

EUROPEAN UNION. EU leaders fail to agree to start negotiations on membership for North Macedonia and Albania. File photo shows EU flags on the day of Britain's newly elected prime minister Boris Johnson's debut in the House of Commons. Photo by Niklas Halle'n/AFP

Pope to preach unity to North Macedonia

May 07, 2019 - 12:31 PM

People of all faiths are scooping up the 15,000 tickets to attend the Pope's mass in Skopje's main square, to be held just down the street from where Mother Teresa was baptized in 1910

POPE FRANCIS IN BULGARIA. Pope Francis delivers a speech during an inter-faith "meeting for peace" on Nezavisimost (Independence) square in the Bulgarian capital Sofia, on May 6, 2019. Photo by Andreas Solaro/AFP

The week in photos: March 9-15, 2019

Mar 16, 2019 - 12:45 PM

This week's selection of photo highlights here and around the world

CARNIVAL. Costumed revelers perform in a carnival procession on the streets of Strumica, Macedonia, during the great evening carnival on March 9, 2019. Photo by Robert Atanasovski/AFP

The week in photos: February 9-15, 2019

Feb 16, 2019 - 5:54 PM

This week's selection of photo highlights here and around the world

WE ARE MARIA. Students and rights activists picket the NBI headquarters in Manila where Rappler CEO and executive editor Maria Ressa is detained following her arrest for the charge of cyberlibel on February 13, 2019. Photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

U.N. notified of name change to North Macedonia

Feb 13, 2019 - 8:11 PM

(UPDATED) A UN official says a notice will be sent to the General Assembly and the Security Council to inform them of the change

NAME CHANGE. People are at work to change boards at the border between Macedonia and Greece near Gevgelija on February 13, 2019. Photo by Robert Atanasovski/AFP

Macedonia takes major step on road to NATO membership

Feb 06, 2019 - 11:40 PM

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg says it is a 'historic day' which will lead to Macedonia becoming the 30th alliance member once the deal has been ratified by all the other capitals

NATO door opens for Macedonia

Feb 02, 2019 - 8:10 PM

Macedonian Foreign Minister Nikola Dimitrov will attend the ceremony at NATO headquarters in Brussels

MACEDONIA. The flag of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (center) flying at UN headquarters in New York, July 2016. File photo by Loey Felipe/UN

Greek MPs approve Macedonia name change in 'historic' deal

Jan 25, 2019 - 9:43 PM

(UPDATED) A total of 153 MPs in the 300-seat Greek parliament approve the name Republic of North Macedonia despite widespread public opposition

HISTORIC. Greece's Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras celebrates after a voting session on the Prespa Agreement, an agreement aimed at ending a 27-year bilateral row by changing the name of Macedonia to the Republic of North Macedonia, at the Greek Parliament, in Athens, on January 25, 2019. Photo by Angelos Tzortzinis/AFP

Greek MPs to vote on Macedonia deal amid political turmoil

Jan 22, 2019 - 12:04 AM

Lawmakers will debate the draft name-change deal between Greece and Macedonia on January 23 and 24 before the vote

PROTESTS. Protestors hold a flag of the Greece's Macedonia region in front of the Greek Parliament in Athens on January 20, 2019 during a demonstration against the agreement with Skopje to rename neighboring country Macedonia as the Republic of North Macedonia. Photo by Aris Messinis/AFP

Thousands protest in Athens against Macedonian accord

Jan 20, 2019 - 11:03 PM

Greeks are protesting a planned name change for its neighbor: 'There is only one Macedonia, the Greek Macedonia'

NAME CHANGE. Greeks protest the agreement with Skopje to rename neighboring country Macedonia as the Republic of North Macedonia. The proposal faces resistance in Greece because of what critics see as the implied claims to Greek land and cultural heritage. For most Greeks, Macedonia is the name of their history-rich northern province made famous by Alexander the Great's conquests. Photo by AFP

Macedonia PM urges Greek MPs to ratify name deal

Jan 12, 2019 - 9:57 PM

'Our parliament found the strength but it wasn't easy. But I am convinced that the Greek parliament will also find the strength to make the decision,' says Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev

NAME ROW. The flag of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (center) flying at UN headquarters in New York, July 2016. File photo by Loey Felipe/UN

Macedonia starts crunch debate on controversial name change

Jan 09, 2019 - 11:08 AM

But the switch to 'the Republic of North Macedonia' is an uphill task involving 4 constitutional amendments and the support of two thirds of the 120-member parliament

NAME ROW. The flag of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (center) flying at UN headquarters in New York, July 2016. File photo by Loey Felipe/UN

Macedonia PM defies low turnout to push name change

Oct 02, 2018 - 10:56 AM

More than 90% of those who voted in the referendum on Sunday, September 30, supported the name change, but only a third of the electorate turned out, results show

NAME ROW. The flag of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (center) flying at UN headquarters in New York, July 2016. File photo by Loey Felipe/UN

Macedonia votes on new name to end Greek row

Sep 30, 2018 - 6:17 PM

Though non-binding, a majority vote to rename the country "North Macedonia" will give the parliament a political mandate to change the constitution

VOTE. Macedonia's Prime Minister Zoran Zaev and his son Dushko cast their ballot for a referendum to rename their country North Macedonia in a bid to settle a long-running row with Greece and unlock its path to NATO and EU membership in Strumica on September 30, 2018. Photo by Dimitar Dilkoff/AFP

#ThewRap: Things you need to know, July 13, 2018

Jul 13, 2018 - 12:38 PM

Here are the stories you shouldn't miss this Friday

How a Macedonian town became a 'fake news' epicenter

Jul 12, 2018 - 7:03 PM

Violeta, a mother of two, explains of her side job writing fake news for websites by saying, 'When one is hungry, one doesn't have the luxury to think about democratic progress'

VELES, MACEDONIA. A person walks on a bridge in the city of Veles on June 12, 2018. Photo by Robert Atanasovski/AFP

Macedonia MPs ratify Greece deal, paving way for referendum

Jul 06, 2018 - 11:03 AM

Prime Minister Zoran Zaev says the referendum on the name change would take place 'probably at the end of September'

Greece, Macedonia sign historic deal to end name row

Jun 17, 2018 - 5:30 PM

(UPDATED) Officials in Athens insist that the deal will help stabilize the historically volatile Balkan region, permitting Greece to focus on other regional challenges

Macedonia aims to solve protracted name row with Greece

Aug 07, 2017 - 12:49 PM

Greece has protested the use of Macedonia as its northern neighbor s name

The flag of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (center) flying at UN headquarters in New York, July 2016. UN Photo/Loey Felipe

Narrow win for Macedonia conservatives but uncertainty lingers

Dec 13, 2016 - 8:25 AM

With the result so close the political uncertainty that has plagued the nation looks set to continue

A woman casts her vote at a polling station in Strumica during Macedonia's general election on December 11, 2016. Tomislav Georgiev/AFP

Balkan countries contest Mother Teresa's heritage

Sep 04, 2016 - 9:26 AM

While she is famed for her work with the poor in the Indian city of Kolkata the late missionary s origins have been hotly disputed in southeastern Europe where she grew up

A photo taken on April 14, 2016 shows a statue of Mother Teresa, the nun who spent most of her life caring for the sick and the poor in India, placed in Qafe Thane, near the Macedonian border. Gent Shkullaku/AFP

Macedonia storms kill at least 20

Aug 07, 2016 - 8:30 PM

Weather officials say the average rainfall for the entire month of August fell on the capital of Skopje in just two hours

epa05461025 Damaged vehicles swept into a field in the village of Stajkovci, Skopje, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia on 07 August 2016. At least 15 people have died in a rain storm that hit the Macedonian capital Skopje late on 06 August 2016 causing severe damage to roads, houses and infrastructure. Around 80 vehicles were caught in landslides the hit Skopje's ringroad which remains closed. EPA/GEORGI LICOVSKI

Greece clears more makeshift migrant camps

Jun 14, 2016 - 4:05 PM

Greek police clear two more improvised migrant camps near its border with Macedonia moving occupants to state run facilities

A refugee family registers prior to a asylum procedure at the refugee camp at the former olympic complex, in the area of the old Athens airport on June 13, 2016. Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP

Greek police move migrants from Macedonia border camp

Jun 13, 2016 - 3:55 PM

The camp closures are part of a strategy by Greece to prevent a buildup of migrants in squalid conditions after EU countries began to shutter their borders to the human influx

In this file photo, two men eat on the ground after the sunset at a makeshift camp for migrants and refugees in Polykastro on June 8, 2016. Sakis Mitrolidis/AFP

CHR on Duterte, canvassing of votes, Japan heist | 6PM wRap

May 25, 2016 - 7:42 PM

Watch Rappler s 6PM newscast with Zak Yuson

Greece starts evacuating squalid Idomeni migrant camp

May 24, 2016 - 6:20 PM

Thousands of refugees and migrants are being moved to reception centers around the country

epa05326199 A refugee family sits in front of their tent waiting to be transferred to hospitality centres, during a police operation in a refugee camp at the border between Greece and Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), near the village of Idomeni, northern Greece, 24 May 2016. Greece started the transport of refugees from Idomeni to the new accommodation centres started on 24 May. According to the refugee coordinating committee spokesman Giorgos Kyritsis, all refugees from Idomeni will have been transferred in the next ten days adding that it will be a smooth relocation procedure and not a police sweeping operation. EPA/YANNIS KOLESIDIS / POOL EPA/YANNIS KOLESIDIS / POOL EPA/YANNIS KOLESIDIS / POOL

Hundreds hurt as police tear gas migrants on Greek border

Apr 11, 2016 - 12:56 AM

It is the latest violence to erupt at the flashpoint Idomeni crossing where huge numbers of migrants and refugees have been camped out since mid February

CLASHES. A migrant tries to avoid tear gas smoke thrown by riot police officers of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) during a protest on the Greek side of the border, in the makeshift camp for refugees of Idomeni, northern Greece, April 10, 2016. FYROM's police officers used tear gas to disperse migrants demanding the opening of the borders on the Greek side. EPA/STR BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE

Pope slams 'rejection' of migrants, refugees in Easter message

Mar 27, 2016 - 7:01 PM

UPDATED Pope Francis also speaks of areas affected by climate change

Migrants rush to Greek camp after rumors border will open

Mar 27, 2016 - 5:10 PM

UPDATED Some people for reasons we don t understand are creating false hope says a Greek official

REFUGEES. Men hold banners as they demonstrate at the makeshift camp at the Greek-Macedonian border, near the Greek village of Idomeni on March 26, 2016, where thousands of refugees and migrants are stranded by the Balkan border. Photo by Sakis Mitrolidis/AFP.

EU ministers meet after Balkan migrant route shut

Mar 10, 2016 - 2:46 PM

The scheduled two day meeting will tackle various areas including a proposed deal with Turkey and the restoration of the visa free Schengen zone

Refugees share a cigarette in front of a fire, during a rainy day, as they wait to cross the Greek-Macedonian border at a refugee camp, near the village of Idomeni, northern Greece, March 9, 2016. Yannis Kolesidis/EPA

Balkan nations slam shut migrant route

Mar 09, 2016 - 10:44 AM

UPDATED A string of western Balkan nations slam shut their borders exacerbating a dire humanitarian situation on the Macedonian border

RESTRICTED. Cars pass through the Obrezje border crossing point on border between Slovenia and Croatia on March 9, 2016 in Obrezje, Slovenia. Jure Makovec / AFP

13,000 refugees at Greek border ahead of EU-Turkey migration summit

Mar 05, 2016 - 11:28 PM

Hope is all we have left It will be disastrous if no solution is found says one refugee

AT THE BORDER. A woman peers out from her tent staged on the railway tracks at the overcrowded makeshift camp at the Greek-Macedonian border near the Greek village of Idomeni, on March 5, 2016, where thousands of refugees and migrants wait to cross the border into Macedonia. Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP

EU unveils 700M-euro migrant aid plan for Greece

Mar 02, 2016 - 10:47 PM

UPDATED The funds would be allocated over 3 years under the plan which must be approved by a majority of member states and the European Parliament

epa05190538 Refugees wait to take the permission to pass the Greek-FYROM borders at the refugee camp in Idomeni, northern Greece, 02 March 2016. The refugees camp of Idomeni, at the borders between Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), changes shape almost every hour of the day. Less than an hour a ship docks at the port, or a train arrives at the station of Thessalonica, more people flow to every available space in the fields near the frontier where more than 10,000 people have arrived and only 300 of them managed to pass the borders on 02 March. EPA/SIMELA PANTZARTZI

Macedonia defends use of tear gas against migrants

Mar 01, 2016 - 8:03 PM

Foreign Minister Nikola Poposki says hundreds of young males were trying to enter Macedonian territory

epa05188275 Members of Macedonian special police forces walk to the border line with Greece, near Gevgelija, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, 01 March 2016. Macedonian police fired tear gas at hundreds of migrants after they stormed a metal fence along the border with Greece on 29 February, as refugees were blocked from traveling between the two countries on the main route to Western Europe. Migration restrictions along the so-called Balkan route, the main path for migrants from Greece to other EU countries, has left thousands stranded at the border between Greece and neighboring Macedonia. EPA/GEORGI LICOVSKI

Super Tuesday, Marcos’ burial, Europe’s refugee crisis | 12PM wRap

Mar 01, 2016 - 12:12 PM

Watch Rappler’s 12PM newscast with Maria Ressa

Migrants try to storm Greece-Macedonia border fence

Feb 29, 2016 - 7:56 PM

UPDATED When one insists on his border the other suffers That s not my Europe says Germany s Angela Merkel lashing out at Austria and Balkan states for introducing tight limits on migrant entries

A Syrian refugee leans against the fence as she waits for the opening of the border to cross into Macedonia, at the Greek-Macedonian border near the village of Idomeni on February 28, 2016. Greece warned on February 28, 2016 the number of refugees and migrants on its soil could more than triple next month, reaching as many as 70,000, as a Balkan cap on border crossings left thousands "trapped" in the country. / AFP / LOUISA GOULIAMAKI

Greece says up to 70,000 migrants may be 'trapped' next month

Feb 28, 2016 - 8:45 AM

UPDATED The bottleneck is expected to get worse after EU members Slovenia and Croatia as well as Serbia and Macedonia impose a limit of 580 migrants entering their borders each day

epa05182244 Refugees and migrants walk to the refugee camp at the buffer zone of the Greek-FYROM border, near the border village of Idomeni, northern Greece, 26 February 2016. The Greek government will proceed with a temporary plan to limit the refugee flow from the islands for the weekend. The aim is to give the necessary time in order to develop new temporary hosting facilities for refugees and migrants in Attica and other regions of the country. EPA/NIKOS ARVANITIDIS

Balkan nations cap migrant numbers as EU warns of 'disaster'

Feb 27, 2016 - 9:33 AM

UN Secretary General Ban Ki moon voices concern over the rising wave of border restrictions in the Balkans saying they ran contrary to the international refugee convention

MIGRANT CRISIS. Some hundred of migrants from Iran and Afghanistan, returned from Slovenia, arrive at the border line between Macedonia and Greece, near Gevgelija, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, February 23, 2016. File photo by Georgi Licovski/EPA

Thousands of Afghans stranded in Greece as Macedonia shuts border

Feb 22, 2016 - 9:44 PM

UPDATED Overall some 8 000 people are trapped on Greece s northern frontier and at the port of Piraeus after Macedonia introduced the measure on Sunday in a bid to stem an unrelenting influx of migrants

MACEDONIA MIGRANTS. A group of Afghan refugees wait for permission to cross the border from Macedonia to Serbia near Tabanovce, Kumanovo, The Former Yugoslav Reublic of Macedonia, February 20, 2016. Photo by Nake Batev/EPA

Police chiefs on migrant route announce joint refugee register

Feb 19, 2016 - 12:13 AM

Macedonia Serbia Croatia Slovenia and Austria will jointly profile and register migrants from war torn countries and then organize their controlled transport through to Austria Croatia s police director Vlado Dominic says

A group of migrants from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan wait to be registered in front of a temporary camp for migrants in the village of Miratovac, on the border between Serbia and Macedonia, close to the south Serbian city of Presevo, Serbia, February 15, 2016. Photo by Djordje Savic/EPA

EU 'gives Greece 3 months' to strengthen border against migrants

Feb 13, 2016 - 11:05 AM

The decision is the culmination of weeks of pressure on Greece the main gateway for the million refugees and migrants who entered Europe last year

'STRENGTHEN BORDER.' Refugees and migrants disembark from a ferry at the port of Piraeus coming from the island of Lesvos, Greece, February 10, 2016. File photo by Orestis Panagiotou/EPA

How the EU plans to tackle the migrant crisis

Sep 25, 2015 - 2:42 PM

There are plans to set up reception centers to separate genuine refugees fleeing war from economic migrants who will be sent back home

MIGRANT CRISIS. A migrant holds his child and looks for relatives in front of the train heading for the Serbian border, near the city of Gevgelija, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, September 23, 2015. File photo by Georgi Licovski/EPA

Europe feels pressure as migrant crisis exposes splits

Aug 31, 2015 - 10:44 PM

The sense of chaos has been reflected across Europe as the continent struggles to respond to the biggest movement of people since World War II

REFUGEE CRISIS. Migrants wait in front of the ticket office of eastern (Keleti) railway station in Budapest, Hungary, on August 31, 2015. Attila Kisbenedek/AFP

Macedonia allows all 1,500 migrants at border to enter from Greece

Aug 23, 2015 - 1:06 AM

UPDATED Meanwhile in Italy rescuers save up to 3 000 migrants from waters off Libya – one of the largest single day rescue operations yet in the Mediterranean

MIGRANT CRISIS. Migrants cross a field after they jumped a fence at the border line at between Greece and Macedonia near the town of Gevgelija on August 22, 2015. Robert Atanasovski/AFP

Tens of thousands rally for Macedonia PM as opposition digs in

May 19, 2015 - 8:54 AM

The center left opposition is seeking the conservative premier s resignation accusing him of corruption mass wiretapping and fomenting ethnic tensions to hang onto power

Over 20,000 call for Macedonian government to step down

May 17, 2015 - 9:56 PM

Main opposition leader Zoran Zaev says protesters will persist until Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski – who has been in power for 9 years – and his cabinet stands down

30 charged with 'terrorism' over deadly Macedonia shooting

May 12, 2015 - 12:21 PM

The clashes in Kumanovo at the weekend were the worst in Macedonia for 14 years and raised fears of fresh unrest similar to the country s 2001 ethnic conflict

Macedonian police officers stand guard in front of the government building as people light candles to pay respect to police officers killed in Kumanovo during a protest in Skopje, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, May 11, 2015. Georgi Licovski/EPA

UN calls for calm in Macedonia

May 11, 2015 - 10:44 PM

Ban Ki moon says he is alarmed by the clashes in the northern town of Kumanovo and urges all sides to cooperate to restore calm and to fully investigate the events in an objective and transparent manner

FUNERAL. Ethnic Albanians pray during the funeral of one of the police officers, Isamedin Osmani, killed in a recent operation, in the village of Studenicani, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, May 10 2015. Photo by Valdrin Xhemaj/EPA

NATO, EU urge 'restraint' as Macedonia clashes leave 22 dead

May 11, 2015 - 8:18 AM

Clashes between police and an armed group leave at least 22 people dead raising concerns about presumed ethnic Albanian unrest in the Balkan region

ON GUARD. Police officers secure a street in Kumanovo, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, May 10, 2015. Valdrin Xhemaj/EPA