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Macedonian parliament to debate constitutional amendments

SKOPJE, Macedonia (AP) — Macedonia’s government has submitted draft constitutional amendments to parliament that would formally rename the country “North Macedonia” under a deal with neighboring Greece.

Prime Minister Zoran Zaev said Friday the debate on the proposed changes is expected to take a month.

The majority of the country’s lawmakers have already agreed on the need for the amendments, which include stating that the country harbors no territorial claims on its neighbors.

Greece argues that Macedonia’s current name implies claims on its territory and heritage.

If the preliminary agreement struck in June is fully implemented, Athens will lift its objections to Macedonia joining NATO and starting talks on joining the European Union.

Provided Macedonian lawmakers approve all the proposed constitutional changes, Greece’s parliament will meet to ratify the agreement.

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