PM: By supporting Ukraine, world did not repeat mistake from Croatia case in 1990s

Zagreb - The world did not repeat the mistakes of 30 years ago when Croatia did not have a general expression of solidarity like Ukraine, Prime Minister Andrej Plenković said on Tuesday at the opening of the First Parliamentary Summit of the International Crimea Platform.

The summit in Zagreb brought together 42 delegations from 32 countries, the European Parliament, the Council of Europe, the OSCE and NATO.

Plenković said that Croatia's hosting of the summit is another symbolic sign that Croatia "in these difficult times is walking" with Ukraine and that it will not abandon a friend in need.

"To stand with Ukraine is a morally, legally and civilisationally correct act," said the Prime Minister.

"I am glad that the world did not repeat the mistakes of 30 years ago when Croatia did not have a general expression of solidarity" that Ukraine has today, the Prime Minister underscored adding that this solidarity is "unprecedented."

"We in Croatia know what aggression is, what force and denial of the right to exist are. We value the Ukrainian struggle for freedom, truth and democracy," the Prime Minister stressed.

He reiterated that in 1991, Croatia was among the first to support Ukraine in its quest for independence and that Ukraine was among the first to recognise Croatia and help it militarily.

"We will never forget it," said the prime minister, adding that Croatia appreciates what Ukraine did at the time of the then "unjust embargo" on Croatia.

Plenković pointed out that the summit is taking place in the context of new brutal Russian drone attacks on civilians and infrastructure in order to "demoralise" the Ukrainian people ahead of winter, but in the past year, as well as the past eight years, Ukrainians have shown that they are "strong and firm" and that they cannot be discouraged when "their identity is attacked" and when "the labels of denazification are attached to them."

The Croatian Prime Minister "clearly and loudly" reiterate that Crimea belongs to Ukraine, as well as Donetsk and Luhansk and all "temporarily occupied territories" that Ukraine will return them and "achieve its territorial integrity."

Plenković also said that this summit meeting sends a strong message of support for "the world order, which is based on international law, on the principles of global governance, behind which the entire democratic world stands."

That democratic world will not accept the model that Russia used in Crimea and then in the recently occupied parts of Ukraine - "attack, expel, occupy, organise fake referendums and annexation."

Plenković said that Croatia, "appreciating the heroism of Ukrainian veterans," will offer Kyiv its expertise in areas such as rehabilitation of veterans or demining.

"You are not alone, you are fighting for justice, peace and freedom," concluded the Prime Minister.

Author: Hina