Massive protests in Greece over Macedonia name row
Thessaloniki [Greece], Jan 22 : Hundreds of thousands of Greeks have taken to the streets of the northern city of Thessaloniki to protest against the use of the name "Macedonia." The rally is a part of a 27-year-old dispute over the name of the former Yugoslav republic of Macedonia. According to several media reports, the participants of the rally explained that they were against the use of the word "Macedonia" in any solution to the row between Athens and Skopje. In 1991 the country, neighbouring the province, became known as The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia - or FYROM - after declaring independence, reported the Sky News. Athens argues that the name Macedonia suggests that Skopje has territorial claims to the northern Greek region of the same name, of which Thessaloniki is the capital. Greece has opposed the name ever since, saying its region has been named Macedonia since Alexander the Great - also known as Alexander III of Macedon - ruled from 336 BC, the report said. The rally was staged in front of the statue of Alexander the Great where protestors waved Greek flags, held banners reading "There is only one Macedonia and it is Greek!" and chanted the national anthem. Leaders of both Greece and Macedonia have said that they want to settle the issue this year.
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