Many of the current crises, such as the migrant crisis and terrorism, can be dealt with through development cooperation with countries that are sources of these problems caused by poverty and war, Croatia's First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, Vesna Pusic, said in Luxembourg on Thursday.
She attended an informal meeting of the EU Foreign Affairs Council which discussed the implementation of 17 global development goals by 2030, adopted at the last session of the UN General Assembly. The goals include combating poverty and hunger, improving healthcare and education, urban development, countering climate change and protecting the oceans and forests.
Speaking to the press after the meeting, Pusic said that many of the current crises, such as the migrant crisis and terrorism, could be dealt with through development cooperation with countries where these problems resulted from poverty and war. She particularly stressed the importance of cooperation with civil society and the private sector.
The meeting also discussed migrations, not so much the situation along the Balkan migration route as ways of preventing migration from African countries through development cooperation, Pusic said.
"In the last four years Croatia has put great emphasis on development cooperation with a number of countries that are important and interesting to us, both economically and politically. We regard development cooperation as one of the key instruments of international relations and our foreign policy," Pusic said, recalling that Croatia's Neven Mimica is the current commissioner in charge of development cooperation.
Pusic said that Croatia was promoting development cooperation not just with countries in Southeast Europe, but also with countries such as Afghanistan, Burma, Angola and Colombia.