Plenković said that especially important was Croatia’s experience in peaceful reintegration of occupied territories.
Croatia will be an active member of the European Union, said Member of European Parliament, HDZ president and likely next Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenković in Brussels after meeting with Speaker of Ukrainian Parliament Andriy Parubiy, reports Večernji List on September 15, 2016.
“We are a member of the EU, and we will be an active member. I think there are a lot of issues that are currently on the agenda which represent threats in both foreign policy terms and security terms, from refugee and migration crisis to numerous terrorist threats to EU member states, as well as relations with Russia in the context of our Eastern Partnership policy, a very unstable situation in the Mediterranean and the Middle East”, said Plenković, adding that “Croatia needs to contribute to all these processes”.
Speaking about his meeting with the Speaker of Ukrainian Parliament Parubiy, Plenković said that for him, as head of the European Parliament’s delegation to Ukraine, “Croatian experience in peaceful reintegration of occupied territories is particularly important, because in this context it can help Ukraine with the situation in Donetsk and Luhansk as occupied areas, as well as with the illegally annexed Crimea”.
Responding to a question about EU foreign policy with regards to the United States, Plenković stressed that “the EU is an important global player”. “The partnership with the United States has always been the dominant component of the EU foreign policy activities. After the referendum in the United Kingdom, we will have to continue with the transatlantic partnership, despite the fact that the main stakeholder who advocated for this policy will no longer be in the Union, on the basis of cooperation, quality, security and defence policy”, said Plenković.
“The EU has a role to play in wider diplomatic processes, particularly given the current crises in Syria, Iraq, North Africa – these are the areas where we need to engage – and, of course, we have to find a solution for future relations with Russia, whose policies have certainly destabilized the kind of partnership that the EU wanted ten years ago”, added Plenković.
Asked whether Croatia could launch certain foreign policy initiatives itself, Plenković said that the top priority for Croatia was its neighbourhood, particularly Bosnia and Herzegovina. “We have already done a lot to speed up the European path of Bosnia and Herzegovina, for it to apply for membership, to ensure that Croats are protected as a constituent nation. We want all the other countries of South Eastern Europe to follow the same path since that is the only way to resolve issues from the time of Milošević’s policy of aggression against Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo. In this context, Croatia as a stable member of the EU and NATO can contribute and assist these countries in transforming and fulfilling the criteria”, concluded Plenković.