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US lawmaker in Macedonia to promote name deal with voters

September 9, 2018

SKOPJE, Macedonia (AP) — An American lawmaker who chairs a U.S. Senate subcommittee on regional security in Europe is urging Macedonia’s voters to back a deal that would change the country’s name and allow it to join NATO.

Sen. Ron Johnson, a Republican from Wisconsin who chairs the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on European and Regional Security Cooperation, met with Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev in the capital of Skopje on Sunday.

He told reporters he was visiting to encourage people to “get out and vote” in an upcoming referendum on the agreement.

The Sept. 30 referendum vote is on the agreement Zaev reached with his counterpart in Greece to change the former Yugoslav republic’s name to North Macedonia. Greece in return would drop its objections to its small northern neighbor seeking NATO and European Union membership.

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