Greece Finds Time to Chastise Macedonia Amid Austerity Riots

World | June 29, 2011, Wednesday // 19:07|  views

Romanian President Traian Basescu (C) welcomes his Greek counterpart Karolos Papoulias (L) at Cotroceni Palace in Bucharest, where Papoulias is on an official 2-day visit. EPA/BGNES

Greek President Karolos Papoulias accused Macedonia of flagrant nationalism during his visit in Romania Wednesday.

President Papoulias referred to the recently erected statue of Alexander the Great in the central square of Macedonia's capital Skopje.

Both Greece and Macedonia view Alexander as a key figure in their ancient histories and vie for his heritage.

"The government in Skopje continues to feed on nationalism. You cannot create a historic past by building monuments," argued Papoulias.

At the same time, some of the tens of thousands protesting impeding austerity measures in Greece, attempted to attack the House of Parliament and Ministry of Finance in Athens.

Tuesday Macedonia also erected a monument to medieval Bulgarian Tsar Samuil, which it considers its own ruler.

During his meeting with Romanian counterpart Traian Basescu Wednesday, Greek President Karolos Papoulias nevertheless stated that he hopes that the dispute around the name of Macedonia will be resolved "in the nearest future."

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Tags: Karolos Papoulias, Traian Basescu, greece, Romania, macedonia, Athens, Skopje, Alexander the Great, Tsar Samuil, austerity, protests


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