Speaker Veljanoski, Australian MPs refer to constitutional name recognition, visa-free regime
Canberra, 29 February 2012 (MIA) - There is an increasing mood in Australia for Macedonia's recognition under its constitutional name, as well as gradual annulment of visas for Macedonian nationals, Speaker Trajko Veljanoski was told at the Australian Parliament, MIA reports from Canberra.
MP Luke Simpkins said an increasing number of MPs and senators believe that the decision to recognize Macedonia under the constitutional name is the right one.
"I believe that Greece should focus more on its domestic policy, i.e. the economy of its country, rather then see what its neighbors do", said Simpkins.
Referring to Macedonia's NATO membership, he claimed this needs to happen, also taking into account the Hague court ruling.
Speaker Veljanoski said after the meeting that more Australian senators and MPs were aware that Macedonia should be recognized under the constitutional name.
"I believe that Macedonia will soon rejoice over Australia's recognition of the constitutional name, first in bilateral relations and afterwards in international communication", added Veljanoski.
According to him, Australia is also contemplating on the gradual annulment of visas.
"This would refer to holders of diplomatic and official passports first, then for students. Afterwards, we hope for a visa-free regime for all Macedonian citizens", said Veljanoski.
House of Representatives Speaker Peter Slipper expressed gratitude to the 100,000 Macedonians living in Australia, "for whom only positive things can be said".
With regards to the recognition of Macedonia's constitutional name and the visa-free regime, Slipper said the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade was competent for these issues.
"We will raise them together with Senate Speaker John Hogg before the department", added Slipper.
The Macedonian parliamentary delegation attended a Senate and House of Representatives Q&A session. According to the agenda, they will pay a visit to Australia's National Museum and church "St.Clement" later in the day.