NATO urges Slovenia not to block Croatia's entry

23rd February 2009, Comments 1 comment

NATO is to hold its 60th anniversary summit in the neighbouring French and German cities on April 2-3.

Krakow -- NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer expressed concern that Slovenia might block Croatia's entry into the military alliance at its summit in April.

"It gives me reason for concern of course that we might not see a situation at the summit in Strasbourg and Kehl where we can greet Albania and Croatia into the NATO family," he told reporters on Friday.

NATO is to hold its 60th anniversary summit in the neighbouring French and German cities on April 2-3.

Scheffer's remarks came after a small nationalist movement, the Slovenian People's Party (SNN), announced Friday that it was campaigning to collect signatures to oppose Croatia's NATO membership.

The two are locked in a territorial dispute dating back to 1991 that concerns a small slice of land and sea.

Croatia is expected to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation at the summit but in the event the tiny SNN gathers 40,000 signatures, it could lead to a referendum in Slovenia and upset the accession process.

Slovenia's parliament has already ratified Croatia's NATO membership and Prime Minister Borut Pahor has appealed to SNN leaders to withdraw their initiative, warning it could be detrimental to national interests.

"You can't blame Slovenia for being a democracy," Scheffer said, but he added: "Everyone involved, including in Slovenia, should do everything they can to make (Croatian entry) happen."

AFP/Expatica

1 Comment To This Article

  • jolly1 posted:

    on 23rd February 2009, 11:31:47 - Reply

    Since the EU is an expensive ,top heavy ,setup filled with do gooders and freeloaders ,we need fewer not more members. My cultural heritage that I wished to pass on to my grandchildren has already been trashed (without my consent). The whole thing needs rethinking and our consent sought about some much needed changes.