Macedonia, Macedonians, Great Alexander, Philip, Amynta, Perdika, Ptolemy, Cleopatra, Aegean, Macedonian Phalanx, Cyril and Methodius, Thessaloniki, Serres, Drama, Kastoria are some of the new names of Skopje’s streets, in the framework of the local authorities’ promotional actions after the respective approval by the Internal Ministry.
Nikola Gruevski’s government promotes a methodical “ancient-Macedonianism” of his country, so names of the streets that were Skopjan for decades have changed into ancient Greek ones, mostly related to historical figures or Greek geographical areas. The people of Skopje seem to be craving new ancestors, probably because they find Greece’s past more glorious and amusing than theirs. They also call the real and only Macedonia as an “occupied” area of their country by Greeks, and distinguish it from “their” Macedonia by adding the adjective “Aegean.”
The renaming of almost 300 streets of Skopje has already raised disputes among the representatives of the Albanians of the country, according to a protothema.gr article. Albanians appear to be noting that such efforts could negatively affect the relations between the nations of the country which are already tentative, because of the arrest of extremist Islamists linked to the cruel murder of five Skopjans a few days before Easter.