Friday, 4 April 2008

Macedonian Rebuff Raises Tensions

Reuters carries an interesting story about the potential negative effects of the Greek veto of NATO membership for Macedonia.

"This (NATO decision) will have negative consequences. The Macedonian government will face pressure from inside and outside," Albanian political analyst Mentor Nazarko said of Nato's decision. Nazarko said NATO's decision would make Macedonia "vulnerable" to regional powers such as Greece and Serbia who he said wanted Macedonia weakened.


Political analysts said NATO's decision could play into the hands of Macedonian nationalists, enabling them to say compromises with the Albanian minority had served no purpose. The analysts said the decision could also strengthen nationalists in Serbia, which holds a parliamentary election next month, and anti-Western parties in Serbia who like to play up their friendly ties with Greece. "They will start banging the drum to exploit this ahead of the May election, saying Greece can help Serbia over (breakaway Albanian-majority) Kosovo," the analyst said.

No-one is suggesting that the almost war of 2001 will start over, but inter-community tensions in Macedonia seem certain to rise.

No comments: