The Macedonian Ambassador to the US Vilma Petkovska officially handed over to the US Deputy Secretary of State for Europe and Eurasia Philip Reeker the Protocol for Accession of Macedonia in NATO ratified by the Macedonian Parliament, with which Macedonia officially has become the 30th member-state of NATO. In a special address, Deputy PM and Defence Minister Radmila Sekerinska congratulated the soldiers from the Macedonian Army (ARM) and all citizens of Macedonia the official inauguration of the country in NATO. “We were waiting for this day for almost 30 years, and we finally achieved this great strategic goal of ours. I would like to thank ARM for their outstanding efforts in the dedication to the realisation of this important national strategic goal, even in these moments, when the soldiers are on a different front in the battle against the invisible enemy, the coronavirus. I hereby thank all current and former ARM members, because this is a success realised with hard work of generations before. Thanks to all of them, today, North Macedonia is the 30th full-fledged member-state of NATO,” Sekerinska said. Greetings to the citizens also came from the Caretaker PM Oliver Spasovski, the President of Macedonia Stevo Pendarovski and the minister of Foreign Affairs Nikola Dimitrov. “We have done it, all of us. 27 March 2020 will be a date future generations will learn about in school books, a glorious moment when our country realised one of its greatest goals, and now stands shoulder to shoulder with other powerful allies. Long live North Macedonia, member-state of NATO,” Spasovski said. Pendarovski congratulated all citizens via a video-message. “This historic success should now motivate us to improve our society even further, because besides this, the EU also decided to approve start of membership negotiations with our country. I thank you all for your contributions to the realisation of this strategic goal; because of your efforts, North Macedonia is now a full-fledged NATO member,” Pendarovski said. FM Nikola Dimitrov said that this moment of success belongs to all citizens who have clear vision for the progress of the country, and pointed out that Macedonia has become an official NATO member-state in a rather complicated time, when the country and the rest of the world struggle with the coronavirus pandemic. Congratulations to the citizens also came from the leaders of political parties, like SDSM leader Zoran Zaev who said that this national success was worth the effort and sacrifices made in the past few years, DUI leader Ali Ahmeti, as well as other political leaders and figures, among which the former PM of Macedonia Nikola Gruevski.