Zagreb: The European Commission has now finalised it's plans for financial support for ongoing reforms in the Western Balkans, Turkey and Iceland for the period of 2011–2013. The plans, called 'Multi-Annual Indicative Planning Documents' (MIPDs) outline a revised strategy for funding under the instrument for Pre-Accession assistance (IPA) and will focus on areas such as reform of the judiciary and public administration, regional cooperation, fight against organised crime and corruption. The funds should act as a catalyst to drive forward reform in the enlargement countries.
The EU assistance will also directly impact upon the daily lives of citizens by contributing to improved rule of law, governance, social conditions and economic prospects. It is agreed that Croatia will be the 28th Member of the EU in 2013. Croatia's past, as far as history tells us, is Slavic, with strong Russian roots, but modern history has been extremely eventful. Yugoslavia changed it's name once again after World War II.
The new state became the Federal Socialist Republic of Yugoslavia and United Croatia and several other states together under the communistic leadership of Marshall Tito. A man who would not bow to the west and although a satellite of Russia - Tito often refused to bend to the wishes of the Kremlin and it seems the Russians were always too wary to take him to task.
Tito's rein, while autocratic, was, in many ways, fair. He saw the value of opening up the Adriatic Coast for Tourism. And, although his communistic values stayed intact, the free enterprise activities of the casinos and nudist beaches of the Adriactic filled his coffers and helped him keep the citizens of Yugoslavia relatively content. But after the death of Tito and with the fall of communism throughout eastern Europe, the Yugoslav federation began to crumple. Croatia held it's first multi-party elections since World War II in 1990. Long-time Croatian nationalist Franjo Tudjman was elected President, and one year later, Croatians declared independence from Yugoslavia.
Conflict between Serbs and Croats in Croatia escalated, and one month after Croatia declared independence, civil war erupted.
The United Nations mediated in a cease-fire in January 1992, but hostilities resumed the next year when Croatia fought to regain one-third of the territory lost the previous year. A second cease-fire was enacted in May 1993, followed by a joint declaration the next January between Croatia and Yugoslavia.
However, in September 1993, the Croatian Army led an offensive against the Serb-held Republic of Krajina. A third cease-fire was called in March 1994, but it, too, was broken in May and August 1995 after Croatian forces regained large portions of Krajina, prompting an exodus of Serbs from this area.
The death of President Tudjman and the election of a coalition government in 2000, brought significant changes to Croatia. Under the leadership of Prime Minister Racan, it progressed into the Dayton Peace Accords, regional co-operation, refugee returns, national reconciliation, and democratization. Since then, Croatia has grown into a thriving nation with economic power.