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Macedonian PM Zaev confirms 'historic' name deal reached with Greece

FILE PHOTO: Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev gives a news conference at the EU-Western Balkans Summit in Sofia, Bulgaria, May 17, 2018. REUTERS/Stoyan Nenov/File Photo

SARAJEVO (Reuters) - Macedonia agreed to change its name to the Republic of Northern Macedonia after reaching a historic deal with Greece on their decades-old dispute over the ex-Yugoslav republic’s name, Prime Minister Zoran Zaev said on Tuesday.

Zaev said resolving the long-standing issue would open Macedonia’s access to NATO and the European Union.

“There is no way back,” Zaev told a news conference after a telephone conversation with his Greek counterpart Alexis Tsipras who had earlier announced the breakthrough on the name.

Reporting by Kole Casule, writing by Daria Sito-Sucic; editing by Gareth Jones