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Republic of Macedonia
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Republic of Macedonia

The Republic of Macedonia, also known under the temporary UN reference as Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM)1 due to a naming dispute described below, is an independent state in southeastern Europe. It was previously part of Yugoslavia and its capital and principal city is Skopje.

Republika Makedonija
Република Македонија
(In Detail) ()
National motto: ..
Official languages Macedonian
Capital Skopje
President Branko Crvenkovski
Prime Minister Hari Kostov
Area
 - Total
 - % water
Ranked 145th
25,713 kmē
1.9%
Population
 - Total (2003 est.)
 - Density
Ranked 140th
 2.022.547
 81/kmē
Independence 8 September 1991
Currency Macedonian Denar (MKD)
Time zone UTC +1 (DST +2)
National anthem Today Over Macedonia
Internet TLD .mk
Calling Code 389

Table of contents
1 Naming dispute
2 History
3 Politics
4 Geography
5 Economy
6 Demographics
7 Culture
8 Miscellaneous
9 External links
10 Notes

Naming dispute

The Republic contains roughly 38% of the area and nearly 44% of the population of the geographical region known as Macedonia, the remainder of which is divided between neighbouring Greece (with about half of the total) and Bulgaria (with under a tenth). The lands governed by the Republic of Macedonia were known as the Vardarska banovina before 1945. Between 1945 and 1991, the Republic of Macedonia was one of the six constituent republics of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

Following Macedonia's independence from SFRY, the Greek government raised objections concerning the name, the flag, and the text of the constitution of the new state, and even imposed a trade embargo at one point. Many of its objections, as well as the sanctions, were withdrawn by the adoption the reference Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia in most international organizations, and by appropriate adjustments to the flag and the constitution by the Republic itself.

The state's name remains a source of local and international controversy. After the state was admitted to the United Nations under the FYROM name, other international organisations adopted the same convention. Most diplomats are accredited to the republic using the FYROM designation. At the same time, at least 40 countries have recognised the country by its constitutional name – the Republic of Macedonia, rather than FYROM.

The usage of each name remains controversial to supporters of the other. A permanent agreement on how the Macedonian republic should be referred to internationally has not yet been reached. Given the long name, the state is often referred to as Macedonia colloquially and by non-Greeks despite the ambiguity of the term with the region of Macedonia.

History

Main article: History of the Republic of Macedonia

The lands governed by the Republic of Macedonia were known as the Vardarska banovina between 1929 and 1945, and as Socialist Republic of Macedonia between 1963 and 1991. The conflict over its official name arose soon after the declaration of independence, and as of 2004 it still persists.

The Republic remained at peace through the Yugoslav wars of the early 1990s, but the influx of an estimated 360,000 ethnic Albanian refugees from the neighbouring Kosovo in 1999 threatened to destabilize the republic. A brief armed conflict in March 2001 involving Albanian rebels in the west of the country ended with the intervention of a small NATO ceasefire monitoring force and government undertakings to concede greater rights to the Albanian minority.

On February 26, 2004, President Boris Trajkovski died in a plane crash. The results of the official investigation revealed that the cause of the plane accident was procedural mistakes by the crew, committed during the approach to land at Mostar airport.

Politics

Main article: Politics of the Republic of Macedonia

The Republic of Macedonia is a parliamentary democracy with an executive government composed of a coalition of parties from the unicameral legislative (Собрание, Sobranje), and an independent judicial branch with a constitutional court.

The local government is organized in 123 municipalities.

See also: Foreign relations of the Republic of Macedonia

Geography

Main article: Geography of the Republic of Macedonia

The terrain is mostly rugged, located between the Šar; and Rhodope mountains around the valley of Vardar.

The area is seismically active and has been subject to destructive earthquakes in the past.

See also: List of cities in the Republic of Macedonia

Economy

Main article: Economy of the Republic of Macedonia

The Republic was the poorest area of the former Yugoslavia, and was faced with considerable economic difficulties until the late 1990s due to economic and political problems with some of its main export partners. It has since made a sluggish recovery, though the extent of the unemployment and gray market continue to be of grave concern.

Demographics

Main article: Demographics of the Republic of Macedonia

The mother tongue of some 1.3 million of the state's inhabitants, the so-called Macedonian Slavs, is Macedonian, a south Slavic language related to Old Slavonic. Albanian is spoken by around 500,000 people and Turkish by 80,000. There are an estimated 120,000 Romany speakers.

Culture

''Main article: Culture of the Republic of Macedonia

See also:

Miscellaneous

External links

Official government sites

Other, unofficial web sites

Notes

¹ The title of this article is not meant to imply an official position on this naming dispute.


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