Message from the President of the Republic on Day of International Recognition of the Republic of Croatia and Day of Peaceful Reintegration of the Croatian Danube Region

15. January 2021.

Today marks the 29th anniversary of the international recognition of the Republic of Croatia. On this day we remember an important moment in recent Croatian history when the world accepted and recognized the autonomy and independence of the Croatian state.

After a vast majority of Croatian citizens voted in a referendum in favour of an independent Republic of Croatia and the Croatian Parliament, as the highest representative body, adopted a resolution based on the will of the citizens on sovereignty and independence and severed constitutional ties with the other republics and provinces of the former state, the international community was given all democratic arguments to recognise the irrevocable independence of the Republic of Croatia.

The strongest arguments were made by Croatian defenders, who demonstrated their desire to live in a free and independent state through their selfless readiness to sacrifice themselves in the Homeland War. Their sacrifice and suffering are the greatest contribution to the freedom and international recognition of the Republic of Croatia and we are eternally grateful to them for that.

The day on which the international recognition of the Republic of Croatia is remembered, 15 January, is another reminder not only of our debt to all the victims of the struggle for independence, but also of our ability to survive in the most difficult of circumstances and a reminder of our joint obligation to build the Croatian state as a democratic and successful country that will be the pride of future generations.  

The peaceful reintegration of the Croatian Danube Region, which followed in 1998 and which we also commemorate today, is an example of success in peacebuilding and democratic development of the Republic of Croatia in the years after international recognition.