Is a compromise possible in the dispute between Bulgaria and North Macedonia?

While Sofia accepted the French proposal to find a solution between Bulgaria and North Macedonia, protests erupted after the Skopje government decided to consider approving the demands before beginning EU accession talks.

Ilva Tare discusses the origins of this dispute and the path forward for both countries with Dimitar Bechev, lecturer at Oxford’s School of Global & Area Studies. Is it possible for Bulgaria and North Macedonia to create a model for non-provocative national identity expression? Is the current crisis setting a precedent for future rounds of regional enlargement? Can the EU act as a guarantee for bilateral talks?


#BalkansDebrief is an online interview series presented by the Atlantic Council’s Europe Center and hosted by journalist Ilva Tare. The program offers a fresh look at the Western Balkans and examines the region’s people, culture, challenges, and opportunities.

Watch #BalkansDebrief on YouTube and listen to it as a Podcast.


Europe Center

The Europe Center promotes leadership, strategies and analysis to ensure a strong, ambitious and forward-looking transatlantic relationship.

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