Prime Minister Andrej Plenković said on Thursday that Croatia would continue to support Bosnia and Herzegovina on its Euro-Atlantic journey with the desire for the process to lead to lasting stability and relations in which all were guaranteed equal rights.
Speaking online in a conference on the transformation potential of Euro-Atlantic processes in BiH held in Neum, BiH, Plenković said BiH had been and was Croatia's friend and neighbour, and that the ties between them were unbreakable.
Because of that and the fact that Croats in BiH are one of the constituent peoples, Croatia has a logical interest in the situation and relations in BiH as well as the desire to help as much as possible towards BiH's progress and stability, he said.
“BiH's European journey is the best way for transformation,” he added.
Still, all the decisions that are essential for that should be made within BiH by agreement of the people who live there, in which Croats must be equally represented, Plenković said.
Croatia has already helped BiH in applying for EU membership candidate status in 2016, he recalled, saying that Croatia planned to continue to extend such help while strongly encouraging EU enlargement to all the Western Balkan countries.
Plenković said he hoped that with Croatia's support, BiH would catch up with the other EU aspirants in the region which have achieved greater progress in EU integration.
The conference in Neum was organised by the University of Mostar with support from the Croatian Rectors’ Conference.
Dragan Čović, president of the HDZ BiH party, said this was the fourth such conference attempting to find answers to BiH's many outstanding issues with the help of the academic community.
“In the case of BiH, there is no alternative to EU and NATO membership,” he said, adding that it should be achieved by taking account of BiH's specificities.