More than two decades after their country gained independence from the former Yugoslavia, Croatians have voted to join the European Union.
With almost all votes counted, electoral officials said 66 percent had voted in favour of the move in Sunday’s referendum.
President Ivo Josipovic declared it “a big day” for Croatia. He said that the people have chosen union with European democracies and to strive for progress. He added that what was expected of the EU was also “big”.
However, turnout was a relatively low 44 percent, reflecting lingering uncertainty among some Croatians.
Provided all 27 member states ratify its access, Croatia will enter the EU on July 1 2013, becoming the second ex-Yugoslav republic to join the bloc, after Slovenia in 2004.