‘Thank You Tsipras’: FYROM Lawmaker on the Prespa Deal (video)

A member of FYROM’s parliament has thanked the Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras in Greek during the debate on constitutional changes foreseen in the historic Prespa agreement.

“There can be no better agreement than this one,” Samka Ibraimovski said at the debate. “Thank you Tsipras, thank you Greece,” he said using the Greek word efharisto (thank you).

FYROM’s government has urged opposition deputies to set aside bitter political rivalries and approve the deal with Athens to change the country’s name and boost its hopes of joining the EU and Nato.

Prime minister Zoran Zaev made the appeal in Skopje’s parliament at the start of a debate, which was signed in June but failed to win convincing support in a referendum last month.

FYROM Prime Minister Zoran Zaev needs to get two-thirds of lawmakers to amend the constitution to seal the deal. In order to achieve that, Zaev needs the support of 11 deputies from the right-wing opposition VMRO-DPMNE party, which vehemently opposes the Prespa agreement and called citizens to boycott the recent referendum on the name change.

About 91 percent of FYROM registered voters backed the deal in the Seprtember 30 ballot, but only one-third of the electorate went to the polls, thus making the results invalid.

Zaev has stated that if the name change fails to pass in parliament, he will be forced to call snap elections.