Zagreb - Croatian Parliament Speaker Gordan Jandrokovic met with representatives of Montenegro Croats in Kotor and Tivat on Monday, saying he was pleased with the status of the Croat minority and highlighting its contribution to local tradition and culture.
"Croats are loyal citizens of Montenegro but they also want to highlight their contribution to the cultural richness and tradition of this country. Croats are proud of what they created here through the centuries and they are an important bridge between our two states. The Croatian minority is a recognised minority here. They cultivate the Croatian identity and have Montenegro's support in that," said Jandrokovic, who is attending an Adriatic-Ionian Initiative conference in Budva.
"We talked about the status of Croats in Montenegro and there are always some things we can improve financially. Croats in Montenegro want recognition for their contribution to the cultural and spiritual legacy of this country," he said.
Asked by Hina about the inclusion of the Bokelj Navy on UNESCO's cultural heritage list, he said it was Montenegro's cultural heritage but that its legacy was Croatian. "Through talks with the Montenegrin side, we will try to have it recognised... by UNESCO."
Speaking of Croatian-Montenegrin relations, Jandrokovic said they were friendly. "Montenegro recently joined NATO, we are partners there and expect even more substantial relations in the future."
He visited the Croatia House cultural centre in Kotor which is owned by Croatia and which Croatia plans to start renovating this year and put to use soon. "I expect it will house the Croatian consulate."
Jandrokovic said he was impressed by the cultural, spiritual and material richness of the Croatian people in Montenegro. In Tivat, he also met with the Croat business community.