Foreign Minister Heiko Maas issued the following statement today (13 November) prior to his departure for Skopje:
North Macedonia is an integral part of Europe. We want the EU to keep its word to North Macedonia and Albania. North Macedonia has experienced an historic year. The Prespa Agreement with Greece is a sign of change. Germany wants to play its part in ensuring that this journey now continues. This does not only concern our credibility as the EU, but also our strategic interest in a stable and secure region in the heart of Europe.
We have the joint aim of starting EU accession negotiations soon firmly in our sights. I will discuss this with my counterpart Nikola Dimitrov today. I am also looking forward to my talks with Prime Minister Zoran Zaev and President Stevo Pendarovski. It is now also important to address the expectations and hopes of the people in North Macedonia. The path that has been embarked upon towards reforms and the rule of law must be continued with determination. Germany stands ready to support North Macedonia in this.