Despite the charged atmosphere in which it was held, the three-hour Tsipras-Zaev meeting at Davos leaves a ray of optimism that at least we may have escaped the extreme positions of the past.
Nothing is preordained, but at least the reasonable statements of FYROM Prime Minister Zoran Zaev are an indication that the political balances in our neighbouring country have changed.
Changing the name of Skopje’s Alexander the Great Airport and the changing of the name of a highway of the same name is a good will gesture, of lesser importance, but essential, as far as the shift in the atmosphere is concerned.
Obviously, there are many obstacles to still be transcended, and above all amending the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’s Constitution.
But the continuation of bilateral contacts at the highest level leaves room for optimism, despite the fragile political balances in Skopje.
If the current leadership in our neighbouring country means what it says publicly, Greece has every interest in continuing to press to definitively resolve a problem that has weighed upon us for the last 25years.
The solution, despite the emotional charge and extreme nationalist outbursts of some circles, can be nothing other than a mutually accepted compromise.
A compromise cannot be limited to the name issue. It must also eradicate any irredentist tendencies that may still exist.
A compromise, however, requires a unified national position, that will not permit well-known far right and nationalist circles to invest in the emotional charge that has been created over this issue, years ago in our country.
Unfortunately, the government chose to ignore the opposition, and to create a climate of tension and polarisation.
Then, the main opposition leader said yesterday that the solution should be pursued at another time, in the future. However, as we have seen so many times, junctures come and go, but we are unable to find a solution because always certain politicians put their narrow, partisan interest first.
The only thing we have achieved until now with these policies is to become divided, creating fertile ground for all types of super-patriots to flourish.
It is time for reason to prevail, and if it turns out that the leadership in Skopje is prepared to abandon its past irredentism of the past, to accept a mutually agreed compromise.