The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) took a giant step toward joining NATO on Wednesday after allied countries signed its accession protocol in Brussels.
The protocol is a key document which could see the tiny Balkan country become the thirtieth member of the world’s largest military alliance sometime during the next year.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and FYROM Foreign Minister Nikola Dimitrov led the signing ceremony at the alliance’s Brussels headquarters.
“Today is a historic day. All #NATO Allies have signed the Accession Protocol with Macedonia, which will bring more security & prosperity to the whole region. I look forward to the day when 30 flags will fly outside NATO HQ,” Stoltenberg tweeted after the ceremony.
The accession protocol must be ratified by all 29 NATO members. Greece is set to become the First nation to do so on Friday.
FYROM will then begin calling itself the “Republic of North Macedonia” and will join the alliance under that name, possibly late this year or in early 2020.