Threats against Greece's Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias in connection with the efforts for a resolution of the name dispute with the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) are continuing and have escalated in the last week, diplomatic sources told the Athens-Macedonian News Agency (ANA) on Saturday.

The sources confirmed reports that Kotzias had received a threatening letter containing a bullet from an anti-aircraft gun, saying that this was now in the hands of the police. They also revealed that the minister's office has been receiving threatening phone calls.

The letter accompanying the bullet urged "All that feel Greek to fight for our ideals, our history, our identity. The issue of the name of Skopje has many hidden traps." As for the rest, the letter added, in a message for MPs, "especially for those that want to put their signature to the selling-off of our Macedonia, only one thing holds: we will wipe out their families, from the youngest to the eldest."

Finally, it urged members of the armed and security forces to "not obey their orders, go into parliament and kill them all, stopping the sell-off to NATO and the EU."

The letter and bullet are now being examined by police to discover who sent them, the sources said.

In a Twitter comment regarding the threats, meanwhile, Kotzias said that those morally instigating the threats on his life and physical integrity were "specific systems" that targeted and misrepresented him.

The government first revealed the death threats against Kotzias in early February, when Citizen Protection Minister Nikos Toskas told journalists that a letter saying that there were "three bullets for Kotzias and his family" was sent to the minister in connection with the activity around the FYROM issue, followed by a second letter a short while later.