Thursday, December 1, 2022

EU WELCOMES CROATIA

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Ten  years after Croatia applied for the EU-membership in 2003, it was welcomed as the 28th Member State of the European Union on July 1st, 2013. In celebration of this historic event a tree planting ceremony took place on the Malieveld in The Hague, in the presence of Members of Parliament, Ambassadors and many other dignitaries.
Ms. Renée Jones-Bos, Secretary-General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was the first to hold a speech, followed by the Mayor of The Hague, Mr. Jozias van Aartsen and Her Excellency Ms. Vesela Mrden Korac, Ambassador of Croatia.

During her speech Ambassador Mrden Korac underscored the tremendous complexity of the negotiation process regarding Croatia’s accession to the EU. She gave a brief description of the process, mentioning the 12 years of formal procedures, the negotiations with 27 member-states, 400 opening and closing benchmarks, 160.000 pages of aquis, 6 progression and 3 monitoring reports. The Ambassador expressed her particular gratitude toward the Dutch Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans. Minister Timmermans had travelled to Zagreb to celebrate Croatia’s accession to celebrate  the EU with  Croatian colleagues and citizens. As the Dutch Music Band “Alle Trossen los,” played the Anthem of Europe “Ode to Joy,” based on Beethoven’s 9th Symphony,  Ambassador Mrden Korac planted the tree, together with Secretary-General Jones-Bos and Mayor van Aartsen. The tree joined 27 other trees on the Malieveld, symbolizing the 28 EU-member states.

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