Defence Minister Krstičević Talks with US Defence Secretary Mattis

By , 16 Feb 2017, 15:27 PM Politics
Defence Minister Krstičević Talks with US Defence Secretary Mattis Source: NATO

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Minister Krstičević and Secretary Mattis talked during a meeting of NATO defence ministers.

Croatian Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Damir Krstičević, who participated in a regular meeting of defence ministers of NATO member states in Brussels, talked on Wednesday with new US Defence Secretary James Mattis, reports Večernji List on February 16, 2017.

Minister Krstičević said that he welcomed the Secretary and congratulated Mattis on his appointment. “You know that he is a retired general, and I have also graduated from an American war college. We warmly greeted each other and talked. I think there will be an opportunity as soon as possible for a more formal discussion with General Mattis in the interest of both Croatia and the United States. The United States is our strategic partner in the area of defence and security, and it is very important that we have communication at the ministerial level”, said Krstičević, adding that Mattis told him that he highly appreciated the Croatian Army, reported the Ministry of Defence.

New US Defence Secretary Mattis said in Brussels that the United States would respect its obligations, but added that, if other members of NATO do not want the United States to reduce its involvement in NATO, then every country must demonstrate greater support for common defence. “America cannot care about the future of your children more than you”, said Mattis.

Defence ministers discussed relations between NATO and the European Union, and the meeting was attended by EU’s High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy Federica Mogherini. During the debate on cooperation between the European Union and NATO, Minister Krstičević said that this cooperation was particularly important for the security and stability of Southeast Europe and Croatian neighbourhood. He also commented on the fact that Croatia, after years of decline, has increased the budget allocation for defence in 2017 by 9 percent compared to 2016, pointing out that Croatia remained committed to the conclusions of the NATO summit which took place in Wales in 2014, when member states agreed that defence spending should reach at least two percent of GDP.

On the sidelines of the NATO ministerial meeting in Brussels, Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Damir Krstičević held bilateral talks with his counterparts – Czech Defence Minister Martin Stropnicky, Romanian Defence Minister Gabriel-Beniamino Les, Polish Defence Minister Antonio Macierewicz, and Slovak Defence Minister Peter Gajdoš.

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  • Due to fog visibility is reduced in the northern coastal area and Gorski kotar mountain area - on the A7 Rupa-Diračje motorway between Matulji and Jurdani junctions and A6 Rijeka-Zagreb motorway between Orehovica and Vrbovsko junctions (on the section Kikovica-Tuhobić tunnel it is reduced up to 30-100 m). The roads are wet and slippery in Lika and Gorski kotar mountain areas and in the northern coastal area. Rock and land sliding is possible. During the day difficulties can be expected in roadwork areas. Drivers are invited to keep distance and to adjust the speed to road conditions. The headlights have to be on during the day as well. One lane is free only/traffic is flowing in reduced lanes on the following motorways:-A1 Zagreb-Split-Ploče at Božići viaduct in direction Split; -A3 Bregana-Lipovac between Kutina and Novska junctions 118th-121st km in both directions; -A4 Zagreb-Goričan at Kraljevečki Novaki junction 93rd-94th km in direction Varaždin till 13 March; -A6 Rijeka-Zagreb at Svilno viaduct 78th-80th km between Orehovica and Čavle junctions in each direction till 1 June; -Rijeka detour road in the exit lane of Rujevica junction in direction Rupa till 16 March; -A8 in Istria on the section Lupoglav-Učka tunnel. In Učka tunnel in Istria one lane is free only every night 10pm-6am till 24/25 February. Due to roadworks traffic is suspended: -on the DC1 state road in Lučko and Stupnik (Zagreb); -on the DC8 Adriatic road at Posedarje till 10 April; -on the DC6 state road, section Glina-Dvor border crossing till 15 March, detour: Glina (DC37)-Petrinja-Hrvatska Kostajnica-Dvor; -on the DC34 Valpovo-Josipovac state road; -on the DC206 Valentinovo-Petrovsko state road; -on the DC228 Jurovski Brod-Ozalj-Karlovac state road at Ozalj. Traffic is regulated by traffic signals/one road lane is free only:-on the DC1 state road at Tušilović; -on the DC1 Sinj-Klis Grlo state road at Dicmo; -on the DC8 Adriatic road on the section Kaštel Stari-Kaštel Gomilica, at Podstrana, on the section Zaton Doli-Bistrina, at Srebreno; -on the DC75 Poreč detour road, section Vrvari-Bijela; -on the DC303 Rovinjsko Selo-Brajkovići-Kurili state road. 15 November 2016-15 April 2017 winter equipment is mandatory on the winter sections of the state roads in Croatia (it includes four winter tyres or four summer tyres with chains ready for use).
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