Hundreds Protest Signing of Accord to Change Macedonia's Name

Hundreds of protesters gathered in the Macedonian capital of Skopje on Sunday, June 17, following the signing of an agreement to rename the country.

The foreign ministers of Greece and Macedonia met at Lake Prespa on Sunday and signed a deal to change the name of the Republic of Macedonia to the Republic of North Macedonia, a deal that angered nationalists in both countries, Radio Free Europe reported.

The accord will need to be approved by both parliaments and a referendum in Macedonia, which declared itself independent in 1991. Due to territorial concerns over a region of Northern Greece also named Macedonia, Athens has never recognized the Balkan country’s claim to the name “Republic of Macedonia.” Because of this dispute, Macedonia has been admitted into the United Nations under the provisional name “the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia,” often abbreviated as FYROM.

This video shows the protest, where tear gas was reportedly fired. Credit: Martin Stefanovski via Storyful