Serbia to demilitarize at Croatian border

June 27, 2006 at 1:22 PM
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ZAGREB, Croatia, June 27 (UPI) -- Serbia's president says his country will withdraw the military and leave police at its borders with Croatia, in compliance with European standards.

Presidents Boris Tadic of Serbia and Stjepan Mesic of Croatia agreed Tuesday their countries' national minorities should be a bridge of cooperation between the two neighboring states, Serbia's radio-television reported.

Advocating open borders and a loose visa regime, Tadic said Serbia will follow Croatia's suit and replace soldiers with police units at their borders.

Tadic said Croatia's entry to NATO and the European Union will open a way to Euro-Atlantic integrations for Serbia and the other countries of the Balkan region.

Mesic and Tadic told reporters they plan to organize a Balkan summit in Belgrade in October to discuss the struggle against organized crime.

A war between Serbia and Croatia in 1991 led to the violent disintegration of the six-republic Yugoslav federation.

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