MARTINO MEETS DEFENCE MINISTER RONCEVIC
(AGI) - Rome, Italy, July 6 Defence Minister Antonio Martino, met in Rome today his Croatian counterpart, Berislav Roncevic, on an official visit in Italy. During the talk they reviewed the main themes of security and common defence and the state of bilateral relations. The two ministers expressed their agreement on the positive evolution of the security situation in Bosnia Herzegovina and they said that they agreed on the conclusion at the end of 2004 of the "Sfor" mission and the beginning of the Eufor mission by the EU. The two then examined, with reciprocal satisfaction, the state of bilateral relations in the defence sector. They went into the details of the agreement signed in Ancona in 2000 and ratified with law 20 March 2003, n. 75. Of particular interest for Roncevic, was the Croatian participation in the MLF (Multinational Land Force), the multinational brigade level formation with Italy, Slovenia and Hungary which was born at the end of the 90s. It is a force oriented towards the execution of EU missions in the context of the Petersberg declaration. Regarding this, Minister Martino confirmed the support of Italy for a policy of openness towards the offerse from Croatia (participating as an observer nation) for its future, progressive participation in the initiative. Finally, Minister Roncevic, with reference to the aspirations of Croatia of joining EU and euro-atlantic political and security institutions, expressed words of gratitude for the constant and strong support given by Italy. Minister Martino, on his part, repeated the importance of Croatia in the context of international community policies for the stabilisation of the Balkan area. (AGI) .
062045 LUG 04
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