Migrations, terrorist threats and instability along the eastern border of the European Union are the challenges that the European Union is faced with and it has to tackle them with a common policy, it was said at a panel discussion on global challenges held on Friday, during the second day of the Dubrovnik Forum.

Croatian Foreign and European Affairs Minister Miro Kovac, who was the moderator of the panel, said that "closer cooperation and partnership throughout Europe" can contribute to the strengthening of the European Union and facilitate efforts to resolve other global challenges.

Kovac pointed out the importance of protecting the EU's external borders and implementing the EU-Turkey agreement on migration management.

"The stability of southeast Europe is of crucial importance for the security and stability of Europe," Kovac said, underscoring the importance of the policy of EU enlargement which he described as one of the most successful EU policies.

"Croatia supports and will continue supporting the continuation of the Union's enlargement," he said.

Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) leader Andrej Plenkovic, who is the vice-chair of the European Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee, told the panel that Croatia would insist that its neighbours, EU aspirants, comply with European standards on their journey towards the Union.

In this context, he mentioned the case of Serbia which, he noted, used universal jurisdiction as a pretext to prosecute Croatian citizens for crimes perpetrated on Croatia's soil, which was why tensions had been rising between the two countries for months.

Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said Europe was experiencing the most complex situation since the end of the Second World War, due to the war in Ukraine, terrorism and the decision of Great Britain, the world's fifth strongest economy, to exit the EU.

In addition, the ongoing migration tide is one of the greatest challenges, said the foreign minister of Hungary which is perceived as one of the staunchest advocates of a stringent migration policy.

During this year's two-day forum, which focuses on "The Three Seas Initiative", a plan designed to boost cooperation of EU member-states in the Adriatic, Baltic and Black Seas region, several panel discussions were held on energy, transport and digitalisation on the last day of the event.

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