In no way do we question the identity and language of the Republic of Northern Macedonia, Bulgarian Prime Minister Kiril Petkov told Macedonian Sitel TV, quoted by MIA.
Asked what his position is on the Macedonian language and people, he stressed that Bulgaria is the first country to recognize Northern Macedonia as an independent state and is proud of it, BTA reported.
When you are an independent state, we do not question the identity and language of the Republic of Northern Macedonia in any way. This is your right to identity and no one disputes it, Petkov said last night.
He also pointed out that the two countries must build mutual ties, which will not depend on who is in power in northern Macedonia or Bulgaria.
According to him, some of the problems must be solved at European level.
We also need to create clear rules, such as that hate speech is not allowed. Every attempt must be thwarted. We cannot use hate speech for a neighbor with whom we want to have good neighborly relations, Petkov added.
According to him, in order to improve relations between the two countries, working groups should be set up in several sectors to discuss specific topics, such as infrastructure.
First, to have an air connection Sofia – Skopje, as it is needed, said the Bulgarian Prime Minister.
Second, to complete the railway line, which has been under construction for 140 years, he added.
We need to take a concrete step towards success. Now, during the first visit, I am accompanied by the Minister of Transport, as I want these topics not to be discussed for another three weeks, but for the Sofia-Skopje air connection, as they say, to agree tomorrow, said Petkov.
A Bulgarian government delegation led by Prime Minister Kiril Petkov is arriving in Skopje today, where he will hold talks with counterpart Dimitar Kovachevski.