Croatian President Croatian Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic met with New York Croats at the parish of St. Cyril and Methodius and St. Raphael’s in Manhattan on Saturday, telling them she believed it was possible to overcome the ideological divides in Croatian society and build a modern state founded on respect and mutual acknowledgement.
She said it was possible “to rise above disputes along ideological lines and to build, in the spirit of togetherness, a Croatian homeland founded on the principles of respect, acknowledgement and the predictability and efficiency of a system of state administration which works for all its citizens,” both in Croatia and abroad.
The president called for unity among Croats at home and abroad in the building of a “country of prosperity.”
“I’m pushing for a Croatia which will be strong, first and foremost from inside, which will care for every man. I believe in a prosperous Croatia because we have all the prerequisites for it… That’s why I’m inviting you, our emigrants, to help as much as you can… Let’s take our state into our hands and make sure that our young people don’t leave, so that in the near future Croatia will be a state to which people return,” the president said.
Grabar-Kitarovic is in New York to attend the 70th UN General Assembly session. She addressed a UN summit on sustainable development and held meetings with world leaders, including with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. She is due to attend several round tables and panels as well as address the UN General Assembly plenary session and give a talk at Columbia university. On Tuesday, the “Adriatic-Baltic-Black Sea” initiative will hold its first meeting at her invitation.