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The Croatian Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Damir Krstičević welcomed the new Defence Minister of the Federal Republic of Germany Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer in Split on 1 December 2019, in the first official meeting, which affirmed the excellent co-operation between Croatia and Germany in the fields of defence and security, and co-operation between the two armed forces in missions and operations and confirmed the support to the enlargement of the EU towards southeast Europe.
At the bilateral meeting held after the formal welcome ceremony the Croatian and German delegations affirmed the friendship and partnership between Croatia and Germany and excellent co-operation of their armed forces in peace missions and operations and pledged support to the enlargement of the EU to the countries in southeast Europe.
Minister Krstičević emphasised that Germany was Croatian most important European partner in defence and security and that Croatia and Germany would continue contributing to the development of the European Union. “We share the same priorities and European values. We are true friends and partners”, said the Minister.
Minister Karrenbauer thanked Minister Krstičević for the warm welcome and praised the meeting held in Croatia. “This is a meeting between friends and I’m glad to be here. I have made friends with Minister Krstičević in a short time. Germany and Croatia are bound by excellent co-operation and partnership, and we have served together in the missions in Afghanistan and in Kosovo and as of 2020 in Lithuania again. Croatian soldiers are important partners to the German soldiers in missions, with their valuable experiences to learn from”, said the German Minister.
“We also know that Croatia has paid a high price for its freedom and hence its special role in stability in the region,” the German Minister stressed.
The Minister also pledged support to the enlargement of the EU and commented wrong the blocking of accession negotiations for North Macedonia and Albania.
The ministers also underlined the excellent bilateral co-operation within NATO and the European Union, and announced the EU defence ministers conference to be held in Split in June 2020 – at the hand- over of the Presidency of the EU between Croatia and Germany – dedicated to be transatlantic bond and the EU-NATO co-operation.
The meeting was also attended by representatives of the German Bundestag and representatives of the Croatian Parliament.
Minister Krstičević and Minister Kramp-Karrenbauer announced the EU defence ministers conference to be held in Split in June 2020, dedicated to be transatlantic bond and the EU-NATO co-operation.