[Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: William J. Clinton (1995, Book II)]
[September 4, 1995]
[Page 1297]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office www.gpo.gov]

Statement on the Agreement Between Greece and the Former Yugoslav 
Republic of Macedonia
September 4, 1995

    I welcome the decision by Prime Minister Papandreou and President 
Gligorov to send their Foreign Ministers to New York next week to 
complete an agreement on steps to establish friendly relations between 
their two countries. This courageous and visionary decision by both 
leaders is an extremely important step that will support current efforts 
to bring peace and stability to the Balkans. It is the result of months 
of intensive diplomatic efforts by Cyrus Vance, the United Nations 
mediator, and by the President's Envoy, Matthew Nimetz, as well as 
meetings today in Athens and Skopje by the negotiating team lead by 
Assistant Secretary of State Richard Holbrooke.
    In this context, I also welcome Greece's strong support for the U.S. 
peace initiative in the Balkans and its steadfast support as a NATO 
ally. Greece is an important partner in the ongoing negotiations and in 
the critical military decisions being taken within NATO. We will 
continue to consult closely with the Greek Government in the coming 
    President Gligorov is dedicated to assuring that his new nation 
takes its rightful place in the international community. The imminent 
completion of an agreement with Greece demonstrates that significant 
progress has been made. I consider today's announcement a major step 
toward peace and stability in the Balkans. It is my fervent hope that it 
will encourage the leaders of Bosnia, Croatia, and Serbia to take 
further steps of their own toward peace.