Ukraine Tensions: Croatian President Threatens to Withdraw Forces From NATO

"Zoran Milanovic" by Party of European Socialists (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Croatian President, Zoran Milanovic, announced on Monday that in the event of a military escalation between Russia and NATO in Ukraine, that Croatia would withdraw its services from NATO forces in the region.

His remarks came during a visit to a factory in Zagreb on Tuesday, and were broadcast by national channel HRT, with Milanovic stating that: “Not only will Croatia not send, but in the event of an escalation, it will withdraw all Croatian soldiers. To the last.”

He also added that this decision was due to what he perceives as “inconsistencies and essentially dangerous behaviour on international security issues” exhibited by the Biden administration.

Croatia’s Foreign Minister, Gordan Grlić Radman, however, was vocal in his opposition to Milanovic’s assertion, stating that ““the President does not speak for Croatia, but for himself. We are and will remain a loyal member of NATO. Everything we do, we do in consultation with our partners”.

“In times like these”, he added, “it is particularly important to show solidarity among partners, and Croatia will do that in the EU and in NATO.”

Croatian military forces have recently been involved in routine deployments as part of US-led battle-groups on NATO’s eastern flank, with around 350 solders having arrived in Poland on Monday.

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