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Republic of Macedonia

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The Republic of Macedonia1, officially known by most international organizations and foreign states as the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), is an independent state on the Balkan peninsula in southeastern Europe. It is often called simply Macedonia, although this can cause confusion with the wider geographical region and the Greek provinces of Macedonia. The Republic contains roughly 38% of the area and nearly 44% of the population of the geographical region.

The lands governed by the Republic of Macedonia were previously the southernmost part of Yugoslavia. Its current borders were fixed shortly after World War II when the socialist Yugoslavia established the Socialist Republic of Macedonia, controversially recognising the Macedonian Slavs as a separate nation. Renamed the Republic of Macedonia in 1991, it seceded peacefully from Yugoslavia without any further territorial changes.

Republika Makedonija
Република Македонија
Flag of the Republic of Macedonia Coat of arms of the Republic of Macedonia
(In detail) (Full size)
National motto: ..
Location of the Republic of Macedonia
Official languages Macedonian, Albanian
Capital Skopje
President Branko Crvenkovski
Prime Minister Vlado Buckovski
 - Total
 - % water
Ranked 145th
25,713 km┬▓

 - Total (2003 est.)
 - Density

Ranked 140th


Independence 8 September 1991
Currency Macedonian Denar (MKD)
Time zone
 - in summer
National anthem Today Over Macedonia
Internet TLD .mk
Calling Code 389

Naming dispute

Following the Republic of Macedonia'Greece" title ="Greece">Greek government raised objections concerning:

  • The name: Macedonia was claimed by Greece to be a Greek name,
  • The flag: the sixteen-ray "Vergina Sun" star that was on the flag was a symbol of the ancient state of Macedon, to which Greece insists on being the sole heir, as the heir to all of ancient Greece,
  • The constitution: a reference in Article 49 to the Republic caring "for the status and rights of those persons belonging to the Macedonian people in neighboring countries, as well as Macedonian expatriates, assist[ing] their cultural development and promot[ing] links with them," which Greece interpreted as an attempt on FYROM'Macedonian_Slav" title ="Macedonian Slav">Macedonian Slav minority in the same territory.

As a result, the United Nations recognized the state in 1993 under the temporary reference of "the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia" and other organizations soon followed. As part of an agreement to lift a Greek embargo imposed in February 1994, the Republic changed its flag to an eight-ray sun and amended its constitution to renounce territorial ambitions.

The state'United_Nations" title ="United Nations">United Nations and all bona-fide international organizations use the name FYROM. At the same time, at least 40 countries refer to the country by its own constitutional name — the Republic of Macedonia, rather than FYROM. Given the long name, the state is often casually referred to as Macedonia by most non-Greeks despite the ambiguity of the term with the Greek region of Macedonia. Greeks typically use the metonym Skopje (the name of the country's capital) to refer to the entire country, but this has not caught on outside Greece.

See also: Naming dispute between FYRoM and Greece


Main article: History of the Republic of Macedonia

The lands governed by the Republic of Macedonia started to form into a country when they were part of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (1918-1929) and the Kingdom of Yugoslavia (1929-1941, as most of Vardarska banovina). Between 1941 and 1945 the teritory of the Republic of Macedonia was divided between Bulgaria and Italian-occupied Albania. Between 1945 and 1991, they were part of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, as Socialist Republic of Macedonia after 1963.

The Republic peacefully seceded from Yugoslavia in 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 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.


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 legislature (Собрание, Sobranje), and an independent judicial branch with a constitutional court.

Local government functions are divided between 120 municipalities.

See also: Foreign relations of the Republic of Macedonia


Main article: Geography of the Republic of Macedonia

Map of the Republic of Macedonia
Map of the Republic of Macedonia

The Republic of Macedonia does not nearly encompass the whole of Macedonia: the remainder of that region is divided between neighbouring Greece (with about half of the total) and Bulgaria (with under a tenth).

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


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.


Main article: Demographics of the Republic of Macedonia

The mother tongue of some 1.3 million of the state'Macedonian_Slavs" title ="Macedonian Slavs">Macedonian Slavs, is Macedonian, a south Slavic language which is mostly mutually intelligible with Bulgarian. Albanian is spoken by around 500,000 people and Turkish by 80,000. The majority of the population are Eastern Orthodox at 70%, while 29% are Muslims, and 1% other religions. There are an estimated 120,000 Romany speakers.


Main article: Culture of the Republic of Macedonia

See also:


External links

Official government sites

Other, unofficial web sites


¹ The title of this article is not meant to imply an official position on this naming dispute. See also the discussions about this.

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Dependencies: Faroe Islands | Gibraltar | Guernsey | Jan Mayen | Jersey | Isle of Man | Svalbard

bg:Република Македония cs:Makedonie cy:Cyn-weriniaeth Iwgoslafaidd Macedonia da:Tidligere Jugoslaviske Republik Makedonien de:Mazedonien et:Makedoonia eo:Makedonio fr:Mac├ędoine (pays) he:מקדוניה hr:Makedonija ja:マケドニア共和国 lt:Makedonija nl:Republiek Macedonië no:Republikken Makedonia nds:Makedonien (Land) pl:Macedonia pt:Maced├│nia roa-rup:Machidunii ru:Македония sl:Makedonija sr:Македонија fi:Makedonia sv:Makedonien uk:Македонія

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