Following his Foreign Minister’s resignation, Greece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said yesterday that his government is determined to press ahead with a successful and permanent exit from the economic crisis and with the ratification of the Prespes in the Greek Parliament.

The Greek Prime Minister made the statements during a press conference at the conclusion of EU leaders’ summit in Brussels.

“We have two major achievements: one concerns the exit from the crisis, which is completed through the consolidation of political stability over the coming period and we also have the Prespes Agreement, which enhances the country’s leadership role in the Balkans.”

“I am here determined to protect both these achievements with all my strength and not sacrifice one for the other. Especially when, in this instance, the protection of one is also a condition for the survival and protection of the other,” Tsipras said.

Tsipras, who has taken over the Greek foreign ministry following the resignation of Nikos Kotzias on Wednesday, said that Friday was a crucial day for the Agreement as there will be a first vote in Skopje on whether to launch procedures for the revision of the Constitution in FYROM. He said that the prospect of launching this procedure that changes FYROM’s constitutional name is the only road open to Greece’s northern neighbours if they want to join NATO and the EU, while he wished his FYROM counterpart Zoran Zaev good luck.

Under the deal signed by Greece and FYROM earlier this year, known as the Prespes Agreement, Greece’s northern neighbour must vote and implement changes to its constitution – including its name – before the agreement is ratified in the Greek parliament, which will activate an invitation to FYROM to join NATO and open up the path to EU accession.


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