Zagreb - The Croatian Parliament on Monday hosted a meeting of delegations of the national parliaments of Southeast European countries to the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly.
"We have discussed ways of cooperation within the OSCE and two documents that will be presented at the summer session in Baku. They make it possible for us as Southeastern European countries to cooperate and have greater influence within the OSCE and globally as well," said Branko Vukšić, the head of the Croatian delegation.
Croatian Parliament Speaker Josip Leko said that Croatia supported the policy of cooperation with a view to raising democratic standards, developing democratic institutions and increasing security in the region. "That is in the interest of every member state so that in the future we could focus more on cooperation in the interest of the economic and social prosperity of each country. I think it is a logical consequence of Croatia's policy and its accession to the EU. I hope we are good hosts and that we will continue to cooperate," Leko said.
The President of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly and Speaker of the Montenegrin Assembly Ranko Krivokapić said that the OSCE had received a new role on the international scene with the appearance of new crisis spots in the OSCE region. "Our responsibility, as countries that unfortunately have experience with problems faced by other regions, is to help them overcome those crises, and that at this new stage of development we are united in our efforts as we are united by common values," Krivokapić said, praising the model of cooperation within the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly.
Dragan Čović, Speaker of the House of Peoples of the Parliamentary Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina, said that the meeting was a good start and that he hoped that a joint position on this region would be adopted already at the next meeting of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly.
Dijana Vukomanović, head of the Delegation of the Serbian National Assembly to the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, said that all the countries in the region belonged to an important civilisational circle that was much wider than the Western Balkans, and that is the region of Southeast Europe, and that they shared historical, cultural and economic cooperation. "For Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and other countries in Southeast Europe, it is very encouraging that Slovenia and Croatia have managed to enter the EU and that is our guiding star that will encourage and guide us on our European path," she said.
Vukomanović said that the meeting was taking place at a time when citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and Serbia were battling disastrous floods. "These are topics on which we should establish closer cooperation because it is natural disasters such as these that erase the borders between our countries. Our working together under the OSCE institutional umbrella is strengthening both the visibility and the influence of our region on the European and global scene."