Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said on Thursday he was pleased that the conclusions of a European Council summit adopted Croatia's proposal that, in adopting new regulations on systematic checks on the external borders, the specific situations in the countries preparing to enter the Schengen Area should be taken into account.

"The European Council welcomes the agreement on the revised Schengen Borders Code enforcing systematic controls on all travellers crossing EU external borders, while taking into account specific situations of some Member States," say the conclusions of the summit. The latter part of the sentence was included at Croatia's proposal.

The co-legislators should agree by June 2017 on the Entry/Exit System and by the end of 2017 on a European Travel Information and Authorisation System to ensure that visa-exempt travellers are screened systematically.

Plenkovic said the point of the Croatian proposal was to not separate the currently single border control between Croatia and Slovenia, that a country in the Schengen Area should not be treated differently than one preparing to enter the area because that would cause additional costs.

At the summit, the EU leaders also extended economic sanctions against Russia for another six months, reached an agreement on guarantees for the Netherlands, which should ensure the conclusion of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, reiterated their commitment to the EU-Turkey statement on migrations, called for urgently opening a humanitarian corridor to Aleppo to evacuate civilians and avoid a humanitarian disaster, and agreed to strengthen security and defence.

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