The first bilateral meeting between the two presidents took place in Warsaw, Poland.
Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović told US President Donald Trump on Thursday that Croatia appreciated the American position that the question of the border between Croatia and Slovenia is a bilateral issue, according to Croatian sources.
The two leaders met in the Polish capital on the margins of the Summit of the Three Seas Initiative at which Trump was a guest.
Grabar-Kitarović and Trump discussed bilateral issues, the situation in Southeast Europe, energy and energy security, transatlantic relations, the fight against terrorism and uncontrolled migrations, and the future of the European Union after Brexit.
Croatia, unlike Slovenia, does not accept the recent arbitration tribunal’s decision on delimitation between the two states and instead suggests that the two countries should agree bilaterally about the solution of the dispute which has burdened their relations since the independence in the early 1990s.
In addressing the leaders of 12 central and eastern European countries, Trump greeted the Three Sea Initiative, mentioning the issue of the LNG terminal on the island of Krk. “I congratulate your countries for having already begun critical projects that will remove barriers and enable better access to energy markets and better energy connectivity. One of these projects is the floating LNG terminal on the Croatian island of Krk,” said Trump.
The Three Seas Initiative is a joint Croatian-Polish project launched in summer 2016 at a meeting in Dubrovnik, aimed at strengthening trade, infrastructure, energy and political cooperation between the Adriatic, Baltic and Black Seas.
Grabar-Kitarović said that there was still need to remove the artificial division between the old and new Europe, between Eastern and Western Europe. “We are central Europe, and we want to be central to the European Union and the transatlantic community, just like any other Euro-Atlantic country. We do not want to be part of the periphery,” said the Croatian President.
She stressed that the Three Seas Initiative was an “informal and flexible presidential platform for exchanging opinions and linking economies and people through specific projects and initiatives.”
She added that it was not something “against” anyone, but something “for”. “Our goal is to work together to link our countries for the cohesion of the European and Euro-Atlantic community because we are stronger together,” said Grabar-Kitarović.