EU schedules intergovernmental accession conference with Croatia for 2 October

ZAGREB, Sept 15 (Hina) - Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt, whose country currently holds the rotating European Union presidency, sent a letter to Croatian Prime Minister Jadranka Kosor on Tuesday informing her that the next intergovernmental conference on Croatia's accession to the EU would be held on 2 October.

The Swedish EU Presidency welcomed the letter Kosor had sent it last Friday after she reached an agreement with Slovenian Prime Minister Borut Pahor on how to solve a border dispute between Croatia and Slovenia. It said that the letter "properly addressed Slovenia's reservations on prejudices on the border between Croatia and Slovenia in negotiating chapters."

"Having consulted the Republic of Slovenia and with the understanding that the guarantees given by the Republic of Croatia are sufficient for lifting its reservations on the opening and closing of the negotiating chapters related to Slovenia's reservations on prejudices on the border between Croatia and Slovenia, the Swedish Presidency will therefore convene on 2 October 2009 an Inter-Governmental Conference to resume Croatia's accession negotiations with the EU," the Swedish PM said in the letter.

The Swedish Presidency took note that "both sides agreed to continue negotiations on the border dispute settlement, under the facilitation of the Presidency of the EU with the understanding either to submit the border dispute to the Arbitral Tribunal or to conclude the bilateral agreement on common state border in accordance with the key priorities expressed in the Accession Partnership with Croatia (...) and with the aim to fulfil them."

"The continuation of the negotiations between Croatia and Slovenia on the border dispute shall be convened simultaneously with tbe IGC. It is understood that both letters present integral part of the accession documents of the IGC on Croatia's accession to the European Union," the letter said.

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