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Photograph: predsjednica.hr

Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic said on Friday that Croatia and Montenegro should once again try to solve their border dispute over the Prevlaka peninsula through dialogue before the matter was referred to international arbitration.

"I think we should try to reach an agreement on border delimitation through direct negotiation before we decide to refer the matter to an international court," Grabar-Kitarovic said in an interview with the Podgorica-based Vijesti daily.

In her opinion, the agreement should be based on the principle of international law, "which both countries embraced in their fundamental documents", that the two countries should respect the borders as existed when they were republics in the former Yugoslav federation.

Grabar-Kitarovic said that too much time had passed since "the temporary border regime" was established at Prevlaka. "I think we are mature enough to solve this issue in the spirit of good neighbourly relations and friendship," she said.

The Croatian president is in the Montenegrin coastal town of Budva on Friday and Saturday attending the "To Be Secure (2BS)" forum that will discuss global and transatlantic security and security in Southeastern Europe. By attending the forum, she will express support to Montenegro in its Euro-Atlantic integration process.

On Saturday, together with Montenegrin President Filip Vujanovic and Slovenian President Borut Pahor, Grabar-Kitarovic will attend a presidential forum entitled "Common Security - Common Responsibility".

The conference will focus on the future of NATO, the refugee crisis, relations between Russia and the West, the elections in the United States and their impact on US foreign policy, global and regional security issues of importance to the allies and partners ahead of NATO's summit in Warsaw.

The forum will be opened by Montenegrin Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic and will be addressed, among others, by US Ambassador Margaret Ann Uyehara and NATO Deputy Secretary-General Alexander Vershbow. Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavasoglu is also expected to address the event.

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