Greek official says compromise needed in Macedonia dispute

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Greek official says compromise needed in Macedonia dispute
Greece's Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias smiles during a news conference with his Serbian counterpart Ivica Dacic, after their meeting in Belgrade, Serbia, Wednesday, April 11, 2018. Kotzias said that a compromise is needed in a decades-long dispute with Macedonia over the former Yugoslav republic's name. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)

BELGRADE, Serbia (AP) — Greece’s foreign minister says a compromise is needed in a decades-long dispute with Macedonia over the former Yugoslav republic’s name.

Nikos Kotzias said Wednesday in Belgrade, the capital of Serbia, that a compromise would benefit both sides in the dispute. Kotzias says “I hope both sides in the talks will realize this and we will have positive results.”

Greece and Macedonia have been at odds for decades over the former Yugoslav republic’s name, which Athens says implies territorial claims on its own northern province of the same name.

They have recently intensified efforts to find a solution to the disagreement that has prevented Macedonia from joining NATO and the European Union after gaining independence in 1991.

Kotzias visited Macedonia last month and is traveling there again after Belgrade.