US Congresswoman does not rule out sanctions against Bulgaria over North MacedoniaDiplomacy | January 16, 2022, Sunday // 19:24| views
“Imposing sanctions on Bulgaria over its veto on starting negotiations for North Macedonia's accession to the European Union is a possible option, especially if Sofia does not change its position,” the Republican congresswoman Claudia Tenney said in an interview with the Macedonian edition of the Voice of America, BTV reported. Tenney, co-chair of the Friendship Group with North Macedonia and the Macedonian-American Society, added that she was not sure if the sanctions were appropriate at the moment, but said they could be effective.
About two months ago, Tenney and 12 other congressmen sent a letter to Bulgaria's ambassador to the United States, Tihomir Stoychev, calling for obstacles to Skopje's EU membership to be removed. The congresswoman claims that a response to the letter did not come, which showed disrespect for US Congress.
Claudia Tenney also said that the Bulgarian government should treat all minorities with respect, including the Macedonian one. Earlier today, Prime Minister Kiril Petkov said the topic of the "Macedonian minority" would not even be discussed during the upcoming talks with the new government in North Macedonia. He denied any comments from US officials. Petkov leaves for an official visit to Skopje on Tuesday.
In recent days, fake news has emerged that Deputy Secretary of State for the Western Balkans Gabriel Escobar has urged Bulgaria to officially recognize the Macedonian minority. The US Embassy in Sofia had to come up with an official position stating that the US government had not raised the aforementioned minority issues with the Bulgarian government.
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