Speaking in Parliament during the debate on the Prespes Agreement on Thursday, Potami party leader Stavros Theodorakis defended his position to support the agreement as beneficial for Greece.
“The Prespes Agreement stops our neighbours monopolising the name Macedonia. The overwhelming majority of the world’s people, when they hear Macedonia, they think of FYROM,” Theodorakis said, pointing out that 140 countries have recognised Greece’s northern neighbour with its constitutional name.
This alone proved that Greece “was burying its head in the sand” all these years and refusing to see the danger that was coming, he added.
When the FYROM changes its name to North Macedonia, he added, people’s first thought will be that there is also a Central, South, Eastern and Western Macedonia, all of which are in Greece. Through the agreement, Greece was not only getting its neighbours to adopt a compound name but also to change school books, so that the next generations will not be raised on irredentist beliefs, tear down statues of Alexander the Great and change the names of their institutions in order to stop usurping Greek history.
If the Agreement was not ratified, Theodorakis noted, “then we must get used to living with a state that will be called Macedonia everywhere and forever more,” while Greece would find itself isolated and in conflict with its allies in the EU, NATO and the United States, having pleased only Russia and Turkey.
“For Potami the priority is the country’s security and this means sound relations with our western allies,” Theodorakis said, ruling out the possibility that the Agreement might be renegotiated for a better deal.