Greece on Monday said it will appear before the International Court of Justice in The Hague to defend its position against accusations by Macedonia, dpa reported.
Earlier in the day Macedonia filed a lawsuit against Greece accusing Athens of violating international legal obligations earlier this year by blocking Macedonia's membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
Macedonia had hoped to join NATO last April along with Albania and Croatia but Greece blocked the move due to a dispute over the name "Macedonia" which is also the name of one of Greece's northern provinces.
Skopje says Athens has violated its international legal obligations, namely an 1995 agreement by which Macedonia agreed to use the provisionally name "The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia" in international organizations while Greece promised not to block Macedonias integration into the European Union and NATO.
Greek Foreign Ministry spokesman Giorgos Koumoutsakos on Monday said Athens was willing to defend itself with confidence before the international court and remained committed to UN efforts to find a mutually acceptable solution to the decades-old problem.
"It is Skopje that has violated Article 11 of the agreement," said Koumoutsakos in a statement.
Both countries have been negotiating over the name for 17 years under the auspices of the United Nations but are nowhere near a solution and relations between the two have worsened since the April NATO summit.