Nato invites Croatia and Albania to join alliance


Nato confirmed it would on Thursday issue formal invitations to Balkan neighbours Croatia and Albania to join the alliance after postponing an invitation to Macedonia because of Greek opposition.

A Nato official said the invitations had been confirmed and that the step would be formalised later on Thursday when Croatian and Albanian leaders attended a special session with their Nato counterparts.

Albania's prime minister told Reuters on Wednesday Nato would guarantee freedoms for Albania but said a delay in inviting Macedonia could encourage radicals and fuel instability in the Balkans.

Greece has vetoed Macedonia's entry until the former Yugoslav republic resolves a row over the use of the name Macedonia, shared with the most northerly Greek province. (Reuters)