The Memorial Day of the International Recognition of the Republic of Croatia and the Day of Peaceful Reintegration of the Croatian Danube Region is a day marking two important dates in the history of modern Croatian statehood.
The Day of the International Recognition of the Republic of Croatia is a confirmation of statehood and the full affirmation of the Croatian state within the international community, and the Day of Peaceful Reintegration of the Croatian Danube Region is a memorial of the finalisation of the process of peaceful reintegration of the Croatian Danube region into the constitutional order of the Republic of Croatia, which created the conditions for peaceful life, work and development throughout the territory of Croatia.
On 15 January 1992, all member states of the then European Community (EC) recognized the Republic of Croatia as a sovereign and independent state: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Greece, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Germany, Portugal, Spain and the United Kingdom. Bulgaria, Canada, Hungary, Malta, Poland and Switzerland joined them on the same day with the same decision.
The first countries to recognize the Republic of Croatia as an independent and sovereign state from 26 June to 14 December 1991 were countries that were also not internationally recognized at that time - Slovenia, Lithuania, Ukraine and Latvia.
The first internationally recognized country to recognize Croatia was Iceland, which made this decision on 19 December 1991, the same day as Germany, but the German decision came into force on 15 January - the day of recognition by other EC members.
The international recognition of Croatia before the European Community was announced by Estonia on 31 December 1991, the Holy See on 13 January 1992, and San Marino on 14 January 1992. After the countries of the European Community, Croatia's recognition was announced, inter alia, by: Argentina on 16 January, Turkey on 6 February, Russian Federation on 17 February, Iran on 15 March, Japan on 17 March, USA on 7 April, China on 27 April, India on 11 May, Indonesia on 16 May 1992.
On 21 May 1992, the President of the Republic of Croatia adopted decisions on the establishment of Croatian embassies abroad in Vienna, Bonn and Rome. However, even before the international recognition and before the adoption of the Constitutional Decision on Sovereignty and Independence on 25 June 1991, Croatia began opening its representative offices on the basis of a decision of the President of the Republic of Croatia, stating that representative offices are established "for the purpose of promoting the interests of the Republic of Croatia, establishing and consolidating its state sovereignty and international subjectivity"(official gazette of the Republic of Croatia Narodne novine No. 21/1991). These offices were established in 1991 in Stuttgart, Munich, Brussels, Paris, Tokyo, Washington, Rome and London.
Croatia’s admission to the United Nations on 22 May 1992 crowned the international recognition of the Republic of Croatia. The international recognition of the Republic of Croatia occurred after some crucial dates and decisions: the adoption of the Constitution of the Republic of Croatia on 22 December 1990, the referendum decision on the sovereignty and independence of the Republic of Croatia of 19 May 1991, which took shape in the form of the Constitutional Decision on Independence and Sovereignty of the Republic of Croatia and the Declaration on the Proclamation of the Sovereign and Independent Republic of Croatia of 25 June 1991, the Agreement of Parliamentary Parties on the Government of Democratic Unity of 2 August 1991, the Decision to Sever All State and Legal Ties Between the Republic of Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY) of 8 October 1991, and others.
Since its international recognition, the Republic of Croatia has maintained diplomatic relations with most internationally recognized states. Since then, Croatia has become an active member of many European and international bodies, processes and initiatives. It was admitted as member of the Council of Europe on 6 November 1996, and became a member of NATO on 1 April 2009. On 1 July 2013 Croatia became the 28th Member State of the European Union.
On 15 January, Croatia commemorates the peaceful reintegration of the Croatian Danube region in 1998, when the occupied territories of Eastern Slavonia, Baranja and Western Syrmia were reintegrated in the constitutional order of the Republic of Croatia. The process of the peaceful reintegration under the UN Transitional Authority in Eastern Slavonia (UNTAES), established by the UN Security Council, started on 15 January 1996 and ended on 15 January 1998.