President Stevo Pendarovski received today the Irish Minister of State for European Affairs, Thomas Byrne, and the Finnish Minister for European Affairs, Tutti Tuppurainen, who are paying a joint visit to North Macedonia.
At the meeting, the friendly relations with the two countries, the mutual commitment to the advancement of political dialogue, as well as more intensive and comprehensive bilateral cooperation were confirmed.
President Pendarovski said that North Macedonia appreciates the continuous support from Ireland and Finland for our European integration process, as well as the help in fulfilling the European agenda and reform tasks in several vital areas.
At the meeting, opinions were exchanged on the current political developments in the country, in the context of the French proposal to start accession negotiations for EU membership.
It was stressed by the ministers that the idea of a European political community is not a substitute for full membership in the EU, but an added value during the process leading to membership in the Union.
The interlocutors exchanged opinions on the situation in the region of the Western Balkans, as well as on the economic and security implications for the region caused by the Russian military aggression on Ukraine. In doing so, the need to strengthen international security and a multilateral approach to solving global challenges was stated, and in that direction, the decision to officially invite Finland and Sweden to join NATO, made during the last Summit of the Alliance in Madrid, was welcomed.