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PM Sanader issue Independence Day messages

ZAGREB, Oct 6 (Hina) - Prime Minister Ivo Sanader on Monday wished Croatians the best on the occasion of Independence Day, which is observed on October 8.

Sanader said that on 8 October 1991, the Croatian parliament took a historic step by severing state and legal ties with the former Yugoslav federation.

"Over the course of 17 years we have undergone a transformation and shaped ourselves as a centre of stability, security and cooperation in this part of Europe. We owe special gratitude for all achievements to Croatian war veterans who defended the independence and sovereignty of Croatia," Sanader said in his message.

"The Republic of Croatia will welcome this year's Independence Day in the lobby of the European Union, at the doors of NATO, assuming an increasingly prominent role on the international scene. Croatia is a member of the UN Security Council, our troops have been part of 15 peace missions on four continents, we have become a participant of international peace and security," read the message.