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Europe

Slovenia Withdraws Support for Croatian EU Membership

Slovenia has withdrawn its support for Croatia’s EU membership bid following a border incident on Thursday.

Ljubljana withdrew its support following the arrest of a number of men, including an opposition party leader – who are believed to have refused to show identity cards in a disputed border region. The arrests prompted Slovene Prime Minister Anton Rop to say that he was withdrawing support for Croatia’s bid to join the European Union, according to Le Monde. "Unacceptable incidents like that on Wednesday... mean that Slovenia – for now - can not back Croatia's accession to the EU," Rop told national radio, according to the French daily. Croatia is aiming to join the Union in 2007, along with Romania and Bulgaria. The authorities in Zagreb reacted angrily to Slovenia’s announcement stating that EU membership should not be used as a tool to exert pressure. In a foreign ministry statement, the Croatian authorities described the reaction as the "inappropriate politicization, unprecedented in European Union practice." The men held were released after over five hours in detention. (EUobserver.com)

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