Pompeo to visit European countries on ties

Washington: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will visit Italy, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Greece in the following week, said the US State Department.

During the six-day trip starting from October 1, Pompeo will meet with leaders and senior officials from the four countries, according to a State Department statement on Friday, Xinhua news agency reported.

During the tour, he will also have an audience with Pope Francis, the statement added.

The top US diplomat’s trip to North Macedonia comes as the former Yugoslav republic is in the process of acceding to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) as a member state.

In February, the Permanent Representatives to NATO of 29 member states signed a protocol on North Macedonia’s accession in a meeting at the alliance’s headquarters in Brussels. Once the 29 member states ratify the accession protocol the country will officially become a full-fledged NATO member.