Name Macedonia not welcome in Strasbourg

Source: Macedonian Information Centre

Without any explanation, the press service of the Council of Europe removed the signs indicating the flag and name of the country from the seats of the three Macedonian journalists who are reporting from the winter session of the Parliamentary Assembly. The signs indicated the flag and name of the country – Macedonia – the name of the journalist, and the name of the media. No one had any remarks about these signs at the previous session, “Utrinski Vesnik” writes.

The removal of these signs coincided with the arrival to the press service of a numerous press and official delegation accompanying Greek Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis, who will speak before the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe tomorrow.

Judging by the reaction of the Greek delegation, it was obvious that they were bothered by the fact that only the name Macedonia was writ-ten on these signs. The reaction to these signs followed soon. An employee of the press service was immediately sent to remove the dangerous signs.

Journalists Zlatko Sumkovski from MIA, Natasa Dokovska, and Toni Glamcevski, correspondent of “Utrinski Vesnik” and the Macedonian-language program of Radio Deutsche Welle, reacted immediately.

No one from the press service was able to say who issued the order for removal of these signs. The daily has learned from reliable sources that such request was made directly by the Greek delegation (it is not clear whether the request was made by the Greek diplomatic office in Strasbourg or the parliamentary delegation). The Greek representatives complained to Terry Davis, Secretary General of the Council of Europe, which was followed by removal of these signs.

No one from the press service wanted to give a statement on the decision for removal of the signs that carried the name Macedonia.


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