Bulgaria must reach a “final solution” to the dispute with North Macedonia so that it, together with Albania, can begin its EU membership talks “before the end of the year”.
This is stated in a letter sent by two members of the Foreign Policy Committee of the United States House of Representatives, Claudia Teni (Republican) and William Keating (Democrat), to Sofia Ambassador to Washington Tihomir Stoychev. Keating is also chairman of the subcommittee, which is to be in charge of the region, said m.dnevnik.bg on Monday.
The short letter does not give details of how this could happen, but it fits in with comments from US and European officials in recent months in support of resolving the dispute. It also coincides with the discussion in Skopje of the serious, according to various politicians , possibility of a breakthrough with Sofia, which would give the opportunity to lift the veto for the start of negotiations, imposed by Bulgaria due to the bilateral dispute.
This task is difficult to accomplish.
There are less than six weeks left until the end of the year, and there is not even a regular government in Bulgaria yet, although North Macedonia is showing signs that it still hopes for a change in office. Skopje sees the European Council in mid-December or even later, in January, as an opportunity to confirm a potential breakthrough (and lift the veto); however, leaders can, even if there is a breakthrough, only approve a date for the so-called first intergovernmental conference (the real start of negotiations), which is unlikely to be before the Christmas holidays.
However, the document, which brought together Democrats and Republicans, is a sign that the protracted controversy is increasingly seen in the United States.
The letter , in which the two representatives addressed Ambassador Tihomir Stoychev, mentioned the hearing on the Western Balkans in a subcommittee on foreign affairs in the House of Representatives. / Argumentum.al