The Republic of Macedonia on Wednesday signed an accession agreement with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). This begins the process of Macedonia joining NATO, which must now be finalized via ratification by current member states.
Article 10 of the North Atlantic Treaty calls for unanimous approval from member states after the receipt of accession documents. For many years, a dispute between Greece and Macedonia over the name of the former Yugoslav republic made such approval unlikely. In June the two countries signed the Treaty of Prespa, in which Macedonia agreed to change its name to North Macedonia.
Before the respective Greek and Macedonian referendums to ratify the treaty, Greece indicated that the name change would be sufficient for the country to support Macedonian accession to NATO. Jens Stoltenberg, NATO Secretary General, praised the resolution.
I want to congratulate both Skopje and Athens for showing commitment and courage in reaching an agreement on the name issue. We can now look to the future as Allies start to ratify the Protocol.
If all member states approve, North Macedonia will be the thirtieth nation to join NATO.