Press Releases & News
MPO Urges U.S. to Clarify Position on Macedonia/Kosovo Border Demarcation
On March 31, 2006, the MPO called upon U.S. Secretary of State Condeleeza Rice to clarify the position of the United States regarding the final demarcation of the border between the Republic of Macedonia and U.N. administered Kosovo. Spurred by comments made by U.S. State Department Officials that the border demarcation is related to or should be addressed in talks on Kosovo's final status.
In a letter to Secretary Rice, MPO National President Chris Evanoff wrote, "These recent comments imply that Macedonia's borders could be altered as part of negotiations of Kosovo's final status. We strongly disagree with any implication that the existing borders of the Republic of Macedonia can be altered in any manner and respectfully request that you clarify the U.S. position on this most vital issue." Mr. Evanoff also expressed the MPO's view regarding the final demarcation of the Macedonia/Kosovo border, writing, "We believe that border demarcation must be complete before determining Kosovo's final status. The border demarcation must be resolved and the borderline drawn within the provisions of the border agreement between Macedonia and the then Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Not to attain these two objectives would embolden radicals who dream of a 'Greater Albania.'"
The MPO noted that former U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Macedonia, Lawrence Butler, speaking at the 82nd Annual MPO Convention in September 2003, stated that "We [the United States] have said it very clearly, and the United Nations has said it very clearly, and Europe has said it very clearly – there will be no change in the borders." Finally, Mr. Evanoff reminded Secretary Rice that the Republic of Macedonia has been and will continue to be a staunch ally of the U.S. in the War on Terror, in promoting regional stability throughout the Balkans, and that the sovereignty of the Republic of Macedonia and its citizens should not be compromised.