In Macedonia, scepticism and hope as country set to change its name

In Macedonia, scepticism and hope as country set to change its nameBy Marko Djurica SKOPJE (Reuters) – The “Republic of Northern Macedonia” – the proposed new name for the country once part of Yugoslavia – is meant to settle a diplomatic standoff with Greece, but will not satisfy some nationalists on either side of the border. When it declared independence in 1991, many Greeks felt the country had hijacked their ancient cultural heritage as Macedonia is the birthplace of Alexander the Great as well as the name of a province in northern Greece. The new name, agreed by politicians from both countries on Tuesday, should end decades of diplomatic conflict and make it easier for Macedonia to join the European Union and NATO.


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Scepticism as Myanmar announces return of first Rohingya family

Scepticism as Myanmar announces return of first Rohingya familyMyanmar’s government said it has repatriated the first family of Rohingya refugees, among the 700,000 who fled a brutal crackdown, but the move was slammed by rights groups as a publicity stunt which ignored warnings over the security of returnees. The stateless Muslim minority has been massing in squalid refugee camps in Bangladesh since the Myanmar army launched a ruthless campaign against the community in northern Rakhine state last August. The United Nations says the operation amounts to ethnic cleansing, but Myanmar has denied the charge, saying its troops targeted Rohingya militants.


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