Zaev: If Spain delays, We can have Conditioned Ratification of NATO Protocol

The PM Zoran Zaev is convinced that the entire procedure of integration of Macedonia in NATO may be complete as late as early February 2020. “As we all know, Spain is the only NATO member-state left to ratify the Protocol, so an eventual delay in Spain may require us to conduct a conditional ratification in our Parliament. We hope and believe this can be done before 11 February 2020, when the Parliament is to dissolve for the upcoming snap election scheduled for April 2020. I must say that I am quite surprised by the initiative of the opposition headed by VMRO-DPMNE and the fact they were not aware that the government is authorised to act upon the ratification process, and not the Parliament,” PM Zaev said during his visit of the “Joakim Krcovski” primary school in Volkovo, Skopje. In meantime, the Deputy Foreign Minister Andrej Zernovski wrote on Facebook that the procedures in Spain have made significant progress. “Meritxell Batet has been elected President of the Spanish Congress of Deputies, which has opened the way for formation of all parliamentary committees. This means that the Spanish Parliament may ratify the NATO Protocol sooner than we expect, and that is very good news for us,” Zernovski writes. Answering a journalist’s question concerning the positions of France on the enlargement of the EU, PM Zaev said that Macedonia should proceed with the reform agenda and give more reasons to EU to correct its mistake. “I spoke with the French President Emanuel Macron several times while in London. The methodology suggested by Paris is to be discussed in the European Parliament this January, and if adopted it will improve the negotiating conditions for states that are already negotiating for EU membership or intend to start negotiations. I remain optimistic of North Macedonia’s integration in the EU, because all Western leaders without any exception recognise and praise the progress we have made so far in terms of integration in NATO and EU,” Zaev underlined.