Former Ambassador Azimov Says Croatia Bridge Between Russia and EU

By 17 January 2022

ZAGREB, 17 Jan 2022 - Russia is absolutely sure that it would renew its strategic cooperation with the European Union sooner or later, and Croatia is playing an important role as a bridge between Moscow and Brussels, the former Russian ambassador to Croatia, Anvar Azimov, said on Monday.

Relations between Russia and Croatia prove that any country's membership of NATO and the EU is not an obstacle to improving relations, Azimov told Hina ahead of a meeting at the Russian-Croatian Friendship Association, which was also attended by Croatian Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, Gordan Grlić Radman, at the end of his first meeting to Moscow.

We are very interested in improving our relations with EU members and we are absolutely sure that we will manage to renew our bilateral strategic cooperation with that alliance sooner or later because Russia and the EU are meant to be together, said the ambassador who left Zagreb in 2020 after five years.

In this regard, Croatia and some other European countries play an important role as a bridge between the EU and Russia, he underscored.

He said that the meeting between Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Gordan Grlić Radman was very open, friendly, and constructive and that the relations between Moscow and Zagreb were based on mutual trust and understanding of concerns.

We understand clearly that Croatia's foreign policy priorities are linked to Euro-Atlantic solidarity, but at the same time that is not an obstacle to Croatia's expansion of relations with countries like Russia, China, and India, Azimov said.

He said that Grlić Radman was one of the most successful European ministers, adding that he had cooperated with five Croatian foreign ministers, but that he had developed special relations with the current one.

I miss Croatia a lot, said Azimov.

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