Zagreb - European Parliament President Martin Schulz praised Croatia as "a pioneer with a true European spirit" which "demonstrated that through determination and hard work EU membership can be achieved" during his speech in Zagreb's main square on Sunday night as Croatia was celebrating its entry into the European Union.
"Croatia is a pioneer with a true European spirit: You have created institutions based on the values of democracy, reconciliation and the rule of law, you have reformed your economy and made it more competitive; you have demonstrated that through determination and hard work EU membership can be achieved," Sculz said in his address at the central festivity. He went on to say that "the contribution of Croatian citizens to our common project will enrich us all."
"Bring your ideas and initiatives to the table. We are looking forward to them," he called on the Croatians. "Since its foundation, the European Union has been a promise of peace. For the Western Balkans, a region that less than two decades ago was torn and devastated by the war, European Union and integration has become a magnet of peace and change," he said welcoming the Croatians back to their home.