Athens, 10 September 2001 (RFE/RL) -- France and Greece agreed today that a multinational force should remain in Macedonia after NATO finishes collecting weapons from ethnic Albanian militants. But leaders from both countries say foreign troops should operate under a United Nations Security Council mandate.
Lionel Jospin of France and Costas Simitis of Greece made the remarks after meeting in Athens today.
EU foreign ministers yesterday called for a NATO-led security force to remain in Macedonia after the alliance's weapon collecting operation ends on 26 September. But the German proposal says the force also should include non-NATO members like Russia, Ukraine, Sweden, and Finland.
Macedonian President Boris Trajkovski says there is no need for NATO to stay. But Trajkovski has asked for a new international monitoring mission that includes the United States and Russia.