Croatia

Croatia

Overview
Croatia officially the Republic of Croatia , is a unitary democratic parliamentary republic
Parliamentary republic
A parliamentary republic or parliamentary constitutional republic is a type of republic which operates under a parliamentary system of government - meaning a system with no clear-cut separation of powers between the executive and legislative branches. There are a number of variations of...

 in Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

 at the crossroads of the Mitteleuropa
Mitteleuropa
Mitteleuropa is the German term equal to Central Europe. The word has political, geographic and cultural meaning. While it describes a geographical location, it also is the word denoting a political concept of a German-dominated and exploited Central European union that was put into motion during...

, the Balkans
Balkans
The Balkans is a geopolitical and cultural region of southeastern Europe...

, and the Mediterranean. Its capital and largest city is Zagreb
Zagreb
Zagreb is the capital and the largest city of the Republic of Croatia. It is in the northwest of the country, along the Sava river, at the southern slopes of the Medvednica mountain. Zagreb lies at an elevation of approximately above sea level. According to the last official census, Zagreb's city...

. The country is divided into 20 counties
Counties of Croatia
The primary territorial subdivisions of the Republic of Croatia called županije . In English they are commonly referred to as counties....

 and the city of Zagreb. Croatia covers 56594 square kilometres (21,851 sq mi) and has diverse, mostly continental
Continental climate
Continental climate is a climate characterized by important annual variation in temperature due to the lack of significant bodies of water nearby...

 and Mediterranean climate
Mediterranean climate
A Mediterranean climate is the climate typical of most of the lands in the Mediterranean Basin, and is a particular variety of subtropical climate...

s.
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Timeline

879   Pope John VIII gives blessings to duke Branimir and to Croatian people, considered to be international recognition of the Croatian state.

927   Battle of the Bosnian Highlands: the Croatian army, led by King Tomislav, defeats the Bulgarian Army.

1671   Petar Zrinski, the Croatian Ban from the Zrinski family, is executed.

1848   Battle of Pákozd: Hungarian forces defeat Croats at Pákozd; the first battle of the Hungarian Revolution of 1848.

1941   World War II: The Ustashe, a Croatian far-right organization is put in charge of the Independent State of Croatia by the Axis Powers after the Axis Operation 25 invasion. Rommel attacks Tobruk.

1945   World War II: Sarajevo is liberated from the German and Croatian Nazis by the Yugoslav Partisans.

1945   Osijek, Croatia, is liberated from fascist occupation.

1946   Yugoslavia's new constitution, modeling the Soviet Union, establishes six constituent republics (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Slovenia).

1987   Croat Frank Vitkovic shoots and kills eight people at the offices of the Australia Post in Melbourne, before being killed himself.

1991   Croatians vote for independence in a referendum.

 
Encyclopedia
Croatia officially the Republic of Croatia , is a unitary democratic parliamentary republic
Parliamentary republic
A parliamentary republic or parliamentary constitutional republic is a type of republic which operates under a parliamentary system of government - meaning a system with no clear-cut separation of powers between the executive and legislative branches. There are a number of variations of...

 in Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

 at the crossroads of the Mitteleuropa
Mitteleuropa
Mitteleuropa is the German term equal to Central Europe. The word has political, geographic and cultural meaning. While it describes a geographical location, it also is the word denoting a political concept of a German-dominated and exploited Central European union that was put into motion during...

, the Balkans
Balkans
The Balkans is a geopolitical and cultural region of southeastern Europe...

, and the Mediterranean. Its capital and largest city is Zagreb
Zagreb
Zagreb is the capital and the largest city of the Republic of Croatia. It is in the northwest of the country, along the Sava river, at the southern slopes of the Medvednica mountain. Zagreb lies at an elevation of approximately above sea level. According to the last official census, Zagreb's city...

. The country is divided into 20 counties
Counties of Croatia
The primary territorial subdivisions of the Republic of Croatia called županije . In English they are commonly referred to as counties....

 and the city of Zagreb. Croatia covers 56594 square kilometres (21,851 sq mi) and has diverse, mostly continental
Continental climate
Continental climate is a climate characterized by important annual variation in temperature due to the lack of significant bodies of water nearby...

 and Mediterranean climate
Mediterranean climate
A Mediterranean climate is the climate typical of most of the lands in the Mediterranean Basin, and is a particular variety of subtropical climate...

s. Croatia's Adriatic Sea
Adriatic Sea
The Adriatic Sea is a body of water separating the Italian Peninsula from the Balkan peninsula, and the system of the Apennine Mountains from that of the Dinaric Alps and adjacent ranges...

 coast is long and traced by more than a thousand islands. The country's population is 4.29 million, most of whom are Croats
Croats
Croats are a South Slavic ethnic group mostly living in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and nearby countries. There are around 4 million Croats living inside Croatia and up to 4.5 million throughout the rest of the world. Responding to political, social and economic pressure, many Croats have...

, and the main religion is Roman Catholicism.

In the early 7th century the Croats arrived in area of present-day Croatia. They organised the state into two dukedoms by the 9th century. Tomislav became the first king by 925 AD, elevating Croatia to the status of a kingdom. The Kingdom of Croatia
Kingdom of Croatia (medieval)
The Kingdom of Croatia , also known as the Kingdom of the Croats , was a medieval kingdom covering most of what is today Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina in the Balkans.Established in 925, it ruled as a sovereign state for almost two centuries...

 retained its sovereignty for nearly two centuries, reaching its peak during the rule of Kings Peter Krešimir IV and Dmitar Zvonimir. Croatia entered a personal union
Personal union
A personal union is the combination by which two or more different states have the same monarch while their boundaries, their laws and their interests remain distinct. It should not be confused with a federation which is internationally considered a single state...

 with Hungary
Kingdom of Hungary
The Kingdom of Hungary comprised present-day Hungary, Slovakia and Croatia , Transylvania , Carpatho Ruthenia , Vojvodina , Burgenland , and other smaller territories surrounding present-day Hungary's borders...

 in 1102. In 1527, faced with Ottoman conquest
Hundred Years' Croatian–Ottoman War
The Hundred Years' Croatian–Ottoman War is the name for a sequence of conflicts, mostly of relatively low-intensity, between the Kingdom of Croatia, which in that period was ruled by a succession of dynasties and Ottoman Empires.- Time span :There are several different variations about the exact...

 the Croatian Parliament
Parliament on Cetin
The Parliament on Cetin was a gathering of the Croatian nobility in the town of Cetin caused by a monarchical crisis after the death of their king Louis II and a major defeat of the Kingdom of Hungary at the Battle of Mohács...

 elected Ferdinand I
Ferdinand I, Holy Roman Emperor
Ferdinand I was Holy Roman Emperor from 1558 and king of Bohemia and Hungary from 1526 until his death. Before his accession, he ruled the Austrian hereditary lands of the Habsburgs in the name of his elder brother, Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor.The key events during his reign were the contest...

 of the House of Habsburg to the Croatian throne. In 1918, after World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

, Croatia was included in the short-lived State of Slovenes, Croats, and Serbs that declared independence from Austria–Hungary and co-founded the Kingdom of Yugoslavia
Kingdom of Yugoslavia
The Kingdom of Yugoslavia was a state stretching from the Western Balkans to Central Europe which existed during the often-tumultuous interwar era of 1918–1941...

. A Croatian state
Independent State of Croatia
The Independent State of Croatia was a World War II puppet state of Nazi Germany, established on a part of Axis-occupied Yugoslavia. The NDH was founded on 10 April 1941, after the invasion of Yugoslavia by the Axis powers. All of Bosnia and Herzegovina was annexed to NDH, together with some parts...

 briefly existed during World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 as a fascist puppet state
Puppet state
A puppet state is a nominal sovereign of a state who is de facto controlled by a foreign power. The term refers to a government controlled by the government of another country like a puppeteer controls the strings of a marionette...

. After the war, Croatia became a founding member and a federal constituent of the Second Yugoslavia
Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was the Yugoslav state that existed from the abolition of the Yugoslav monarchy until it was dissolved in 1992 amid the Yugoslav Wars. It was a socialist state and a federation made up of six socialist republics: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia,...

. In June 1991, Croatia declared independence
Statehood Day (Croatia)
Statehood Day is a holiday that occurs every year on June 25 in Croatia to celebrate the country's 1991 declaration of independence from Yugoslavia. The Statehood Day is an official holiday, a day off work in Croatia....

, which came into effect on 8 October of the same year. The Croatian War of Independence
Croatian War of Independence
The Croatian War of Independence was fought from 1991 to 1995 between forces loyal to the government of Croatia—which had declared independence from the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia —and the Serb-controlled Yugoslav People's Army and local Serb forces, with the JNA ending its combat...

 was fought successfully during the four years following the declaration.

Since the fall of communism
Communism
Communism is a social, political and economic ideology that aims at the establishment of a classless, moneyless, revolutionary and stateless socialist society structured upon common ownership of the means of production...

 and the end of the war of independence, Croatia has achieved a very high human development and income equality, and ranks high among Central European nations in terms of education, health, quality of life and economic dynamism. The International Monetary Fund
International Monetary Fund
The International Monetary Fund is an organization of 187 countries, working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world...

 classified Croatia as an emerging and developing economy, and the World Bank
World Bank
The World Bank is an international financial institution that provides loans to developing countries for capital programmes.The World Bank's official goal is the reduction of poverty...

 identified it as a high income economy. Croatia is a member of the United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

, the Council of Europe
Council of Europe
The Council of Europe is an international organisation promoting co-operation between all countries of Europe in the areas of legal standards, human rights, democratic development, the rule of law and cultural co-operation...

, NATO, the World Trade Organization
World Trade Organization
The World Trade Organization is an organization that intends to supervise and liberalize international trade. The organization officially commenced on January 1, 1995 under the Marrakech Agreement, replacing the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade , which commenced in 1948...

, CEFTA and a founding member of the Union for the Mediterranean
Union for the Mediterranean
The Union for the Mediterranean is a multilateral partnership that encompasses 43 countries from Europe and the Mediterranean Basin: the 27 member states of the European Union and 16 Mediterranean partner countries from North Africa, the Middle East and the Balkans...

. Croatia is an acceding state of the European Union
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

, with full membership expected in July 2013. As an active participant in the UN peacekeeping forces
United Nations peacekeeping
Peacekeeping by the United Nations is a role held by the Department of Peacekeeping Operations as "a unique and dynamic instrument developed by the Organization as a way to help countries torn by conflict create the conditions for lasting peace"...

, Croatia has contributed troops to the NATO-led mission in Afghanistan
International Security Assistance Force
The International Security Assistance Force is a NATO-led security mission in Afghanistan established by the United Nations Security Council on 20 December 2001 by Resolution 1386 as envisaged by the Bonn Agreement...

 and took a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council for the 2008–2009 term.

The service sector dominates Croatia's economy, followed by the industrial sector and agriculture
Agriculture
Agriculture is the cultivation of animals, plants, fungi and other life forms for food, fiber, and other products used to sustain life. Agriculture was the key implement in the rise of sedentary human civilization, whereby farming of domesticated species created food surpluses that nurtured the...

. Tourism
Tourism in Croatia
Tourism in Croatia is a well-developed industry. Many tourists visit to experience the country's extensive coastline and well-preserved coastal Renaissance towns...

 is a significant source of revenue during the summer, with Croatia ranked the 18th most popular tourist destination in the world. The state controls a part of the economy, with substantial government expenditure. The European Union is Croatia's most important trading partner
International trade
International trade is the exchange of capital, goods, and services across international borders or territories. In most countries, such trade represents a significant share of gross domestic product...

. Since 2000, the Croatian government has invested in infrastructure, especially transport routes and facilities
Transport in Croatia
Transport in Croatia relies on several main modes, including transport by road, rail, water and air. Road transport incorporates a comprehensive network of state, county and local routes augmented by a network of highways for long-distance travelling...

 along the Pan-European corridors
Pan-European corridors
The ten Pan-European transport corridors were defined at the second Pan-European transport Conference in Crete, March 1994, as routes in Central and Eastern Europe that required major investment over the next ten to fifteen years. Additions were made at the third conference in Helsinki in 1997...

. Internal sources produce a significant portion of energy in Croatia
Energy in Croatia
Energy in Croatia describes energy and electricity production, consumption and import in Croatia.Croatia satisfies its electricity needs largely from hydro and thermal power plants, and partly from the Krško nuclear power plant, which is co-owned by Croatian and Slovenian state-owned power...

; the rest is imported. Croatia provides a universal health care
Universal health care
Universal health care is a term referring to organized health care systems built around the principle of universal coverage for all members of society, combining mechanisms for health financing and service provision.-History:...

 system and free primary and secondary education
Education in Croatia
Education in Croatia is defined as a constitutional right: the Constitution of Croatia section 65 defines primary education as mandatory and free, while secondary and higher education as equally available to all...

, while supporting culture
Culture of Croatia
The culture of Croatia has roots in a long history: the Croatian people have been inhabiting the area for fourteen centuries, but there are important remnants of the earlier periods still preserved in the country.- Ancient Heritage :...

 through numerous public institutions and through corporate investments in media
Media of Croatia
The media of Croatia refers to mass media outlets based in Croatia. Television, magazines, and newspapers are all operated by both state-owned and for-profit corporations which depend on advertising, subscription, and other sales-related revenues...

 and publishing
Croatian literature
Croatian literature is a definition given to the compilation of novels, dramas, short stories, poems and other various work of written kind entirely attributed to the medieval and modern culture of the Croats and the Croatian language....

. The nation prides itself in its cultural, artistic and scientific contributions to the world, as well as in its cuisine
Croatian cuisine
Croatian cuisine is heterogeneous and is known as the cuisine of regions, since every region has its own distinct culinary traditions. Its modern roots date back to ancient periods and the differences in the selection of foodstuffs and forms of cooking are most notable between those on the mainland...

, wines
Croatian wine
Croatian wine has a history dating back to the Ancient Greek settlers, and their wine production on the southern Dalmatian islands of Vis, Hvar and Korčula some 2,500 years ago. Like other old world wine producers, many traditional grape varieties still survive in Croatia, perfectly suited to...

 and sporting achievements
Sport in Croatia
Sport in Croatia has significant role in Croatian culture, and many local sports clubs as well as the Croatian national squads enjoy strong followings in the country. The most enduring sport by far in Croatia is football, and is played on amateur and professional levels amongst all age groups...

.

History


The name of Croatia
Name of Croatia
The name of Croatia derives from Medieval Latin Croātia, itself a derivation of North-West Slavic xrovat-, by liquid metathesis from Common Slavic *xorvat-, from Proto-Slavic *xarwāt-...

 derives from Medieval Latin
Medieval Latin
Medieval Latin was the form of Latin used in the Middle Ages, primarily as a medium of scholarly exchange and as the liturgical language of the medieval Roman Catholic Church, but also as a language of science, literature, law, and administration. Despite the clerical origin of many of its authors,...

 Croātia, from Dux Croatorum ("Duke of Croatians") attested in the Branimir Inscription
Branimir Inscription
The Branimir Inscription is the oldest preserved monument containing an inscription defining a Croatian medieval ruler as a duke of Croats - Dux Cruatorvm...

, itself a derivation of North-West Slavic *Xrovat-, by liquid metathesis from proposed Common Slavic *Xorvat-, from proposed Proto-Slavic *Xarwāt- (*Xъrvatъ) or *Xŭrvatŭ (*xъrvatъ). The origin of the name is uncertain, but is thought to be a Gothic
Gothic language
Gothic is an extinct Germanic language that was spoken by the Goths. It is known primarily from the Codex Argenteus, a 6th-century copy of a 4th-century Bible translation, and is the only East Germanic language with a sizable Text corpus...

 or Indo-Aryan
Indo-Aryan languages
The Indo-Aryan languages constitutes a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages, itself a branch of the Indo-European language family...

 term assigned to a Slavic tribe
Slavic peoples
The Slavic people are an Indo-European panethnicity living in Eastern Europe, Southeast Europe, North Asia and Central Asia. The term Slavic represents a broad ethno-linguistic group of people, who speak languages belonging to the Slavic language family and share, to varying degrees, certain...

. The oldest preserved record of the Croatian ethnonym
Ethnonym
An ethnonym is the name applied to a given ethnic group. Ethnonyms can be divided into two categories: exonyms and autonyms or endonyms .As an example, the ethnonym for...

 *xъrvatъ is of variable stem, attested in the Baška tablet
Baška tablet
Baška tablet is one of the first monuments containing an inscription in the Croatian language, dating from the year 1100.The tablet was discovered by scholars in 1851 in the paving of the Romanesque church of St. Lucy in Jurandvor, near Baška, on the island of Krk...

 in style
Style (manner of address)
A style of office, or honorific, is a legal, official, or recognized title. A style, by tradition or law, precedes a reference to a person who holds a post or political office, and is sometimes used to refer to the office itself. An honorific can also be awarded to an individual in a personal...

 zvъnъmirъ kralъ xrъvatъskъ ("Zvonimir
Dmitar Zvonimir
Demetrius Zvonimir was King of Croatia from 8 October 1076 until his death. He also ruled as Ban of Slavonia , and was named Duke of Croatia in around 1075. His native name was Zvonimir, while the name Demetrius was adopted at his coronation.He began as a Ban of Slavonia in the service of King...

, Croatian king").

The first attestation of the Latin term is attributed to a charter of duke Trpimir
Trpimir I of Croatia
Trpimir I was a duke of Croatia in 845–864, and the founder of the Croatian House of Trpimirović. Although he was formally vassal of the Frankish Emperor Lothair I, Trpimir used Frankish-Byzantine conflicts to rule on his own.-Reign:...

 from the year 852. The original is lost, and just a 1568 copy is preserved—leading to doubts on the authenticity of the claim. The oldest preserved stone inscription is the 9th century Branimir Inscription
Branimir Inscription
The Branimir Inscription is the oldest preserved monument containing an inscription defining a Croatian medieval ruler as a duke of Croats - Dux Cruatorvm...

 (found near Benkovac
Benkovac
Benkovac is a town and municipality in the interior of Zadar County, Croatia.- Geography :Benkovac is located where the plain of Ravni Kotari and the karstic plateau of Bukovica meet, 20 km from the town of Biograd na Moru and 30 km from Zadar. The Zagreb-Split motorway and Zadar-Knin...

), where Duke Branimir
Branimir of Croatia
Branimir was a ruler of Dalmatian Croatia who reigned as Knez from 879 to 892. He was recognized by Pope John VIII as the Duke of the Croats...

 is styled as Dux Cruatorvm. The inscription is not dated accurately, however, Branimir ruled Croatia in 879–892.

Prehistory and antiquity




The area known as Croatia today was inhabited throughout the prehistoric period. Fossils of Neanderthals dating to the middle Palaeolithic
Paleolithic
The Paleolithic Age, Era or Period, is a prehistoric period of human history distinguished by the development of the most primitive stone tools discovered , and covers roughly 99% of human technological prehistory...

 period have been unearthed in northern Croatia, with the most famous and the best presented site in Krapina
Krapina
Krapina is a town in northern Croatia and the administrative centre of Krapina-Zagorje County with a population of 4,482 and a total municipality population of 12,479...

. Remnants of several Neolithic
Neolithic
The Neolithic Age, Era, or Period, or New Stone Age, was a period in the development of human technology, beginning about 9500 BC in some parts of the Middle East, and later in other parts of the world. It is traditionally considered as the last part of the Stone Age...

 and Chalcolithic cultures were found in all regions of the country. The largest proportion of the sites is in the northern Croatia river valleys, and the most significant cultures whose presence was discovered include Starčevo, Vučedol
Vucedol culture
The Vučedol culture was a Indo-European culture that flourished between 3000 and 2200 BC , centered in Syrmia and eastern Slavonia on the right bank of the Danube river, but possibly spreading throughout the Pannonian plain and western Balkans...

 and Baden culture
Baden culture
Baden culture, ca 3600 BC-ca 2800 BC, an eneolithic culture found in central Europe. It is known from Moravia, Hungary, Slovakia and Eastern Austria...

s. The Iron Age
Iron Age
The Iron Age is the archaeological period generally occurring after the Bronze Age, marked by the prevalent use of iron. The early period of the age is characterized by the widespread use of iron or steel. The adoption of such material coincided with other changes in society, including differing...

 left traces of the early Illyrian
Illyrians
The Illyrians were a group of tribes who inhabited part of the western Balkans in antiquity and the south-eastern coasts of the Italian peninsula...

 Hallstatt culture
Hallstatt culture
The Hallstatt culture was the predominant Central European culture from the 8th to 6th centuries BC , developing out of the Urnfield culture of the 12th century BC and followed in much of Central Europe by the La Tène culture.By the 6th century BC, the Hallstatt culture extended for some...

 and the Celtic La Tène culture
La Tène culture
The La Tène culture was a European Iron Age culture named after the archaeological site of La Tène on the north side of Lake Neuchâtel in Switzerland, where a rich cache of artifacts was discovered by Hansli Kopp in 1857....

.

Much later, the region was settled by Liburnians
Liburnians
The Liburnians were an ancient Illyrian tribe inhabiting the district called Liburnia, a coastal region of the northeastern Adriatic between the rivers Arsia and Titius in what is now Croatia....

 and Illyrians
Illyrians
The Illyrians were a group of tribes who inhabited part of the western Balkans in antiquity and the south-eastern coasts of the Italian peninsula...

, while the first Greek
Greece
Greece , officially the Hellenic Republic , and historically Hellas or the Republic of Greece in English, is a country in southeastern Europe....

 colonies were established on the Vis
Vis (island)
Vis is the most outerly lying larger Croatian island in the Adriatic Sea, and is part of the Central Dalmatian group of islands, with an area of 90.26 km² and a population of 3,617 . Of all the inhabited Croatian islands, it is the farthest from the coast...

 and Hvar
Hvar
- Climate :The climate of Hvar is characterized by mild winters and warm summers. The yearly average air temperature is , 686 mm of precipitation fall on the town of Hvar on average every year and the town has a total of 2800 sunshine hours per year. For comparison Hvar has an average of 7.7...

. In 9 AD the territory of today's Croatia became part of the Roman Empire
Roman Empire
The Roman Empire was the post-Republican period of the ancient Roman civilization, characterised by an autocratic form of government and large territorial holdings in Europe and around the Mediterranean....

. Emperor Diocletian
Diocletian
Diocletian |latinized]] upon his accession to Diocletian . c. 22 December 244  – 3 December 311), was a Roman Emperor from 284 to 305....

 built a large palace
Diocletian's Palace
Diocletian's Palace is a building in Split, Croatia, that was built by the Roman emperor Diocletian at the turn of the fourth century AD.Diocletian built the massive palace in preparation for his retirement on 1 May 305 AD. It lies in a bay on the south side of a short peninsula running out from...

 in Split
Split (city)
Split is a Mediterranean city on the eastern shores of the Adriatic Sea, centered around the ancient Roman Palace of the Emperor Diocletian and its wide port bay. With a population of 178,192 citizens, and a metropolitan area numbering up to 467,899, Split is by far the largest Dalmatian city and...

 when he retired in AD 305. During the 5th century, one of the last Emperors of the Western Roman Empire, Julius Nepos
Julius Nepos
Julius Nepos was Western Roman Emperor de facto from 474 to 475 and de jure until 480. Some historians consider him to be the last Western Roman Emperor, while others consider the western line to have ended with Romulus Augustulus in 476...

, ruled his small empire from the palace. The period ends with Avar
Eurasian Avars
The Eurasian Avars or Ancient Avars were a highly organized nomadic confederacy of mixed origins. They were ruled by a khagan, who was surrounded by a tight-knit entourage of nomad warriors, an organization characteristic of Turko-Mongol groups...

 and Croat
Croats
Croats are a South Slavic ethnic group mostly living in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and nearby countries. There are around 4 million Croats living inside Croatia and up to 4.5 million throughout the rest of the world. Responding to political, social and economic pressure, many Croats have...

 invasions in the first half of the 7th century and destruction of almost all Roman towns. Roman survivors retreated to more favourable sites on the coast, islands and mountains. The city of Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik is a Croatian city on the Adriatic Sea coast, positioned at the terminal end of the Isthmus of Dubrovnik. It is one of the most prominent tourist destinations on the Adriatic, a seaport and the centre of Dubrovnik-Neretva county. Its total population is 42,641...

 was founded by such survivors from Epidaurum
Epidaurus (Dalmatia)
Epidaurus was an ancient Greek colony in Dalmatia founded sometime in the 6th century BC.The town changed its name to Epidaurum during Roman rule in 228 BC....

.

The ethnogenesis
Ethnogenesis
Ethnogenesis is the process by which a group of human beings comes to be understood or to understand themselves as ethnically distinct from the wider social landscape from which their grouping emerges...

 of Croats is uncertain and there are several competing theories, Slavic and Iranian being the most frequently put forward. The most widely accepted of these, the Slavic theory, proposes migration of White Croats
White Croats
White Croats is the designation for the group of Slavic tribes, of which seven tribes led by 5 brothers and 2 sisters migrated to Dalmatia as part of the migration of the Croats in the 7th century, being invited to settle on this vastly depopulated area by Roman...

 from the territory of White Croatia
White Croatia
White Croatia is a vaguely defined area, said to lie somewhere in Central Europe, near Bavaria, beyond Hungary on south of Poland and west of Ukraine, and adjacent to the Frankish Empire from which the part of White Croats crossed the Carpathians and migrated in the 7th century into Dalmatia...

 during the Migration Period
Migration Period
The Migration Period, also called the Barbarian Invasions , was a period of intensified human migration in Europe that occurred from c. 400 to 800 CE. This period marked the transition from Late Antiquity to the Early Middle Ages...

. Conversely, the Iranian theory proposes Iranian
Iranian peoples
The Iranian peoples are an Indo-European ethnic-linguistic group, consisting of the speakers of Iranian languages, a major branch of the Indo-European language family, as such forming a branch of Indo-European-speaking peoples...

 origin, based on Tanais Tablets containing Greek
Greek language
Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages. Native to the southern Balkans, it has the longest documented history of any Indo-European language, spanning 34 centuries of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the majority of its history;...

 inscription of given names Χορούαθ[ος], Χοροάθος and Χορόαθος (Horoúathos, Horoáthos, and Horóathos) and their interpretation as anthroponyms of Croatian people.

Middle Ages




According to the work De Administrando Imperio
De Administrando Imperio
De Administrando Imperio is the Latin title of a Greek work written by the 10th-century Eastern Roman Emperor Constantine VII. The Greek title of the work is...

written by the 10th-century Byzantine Emperor Constantine VII
Constantine VII
Constantine VII Porphyrogennetos or Porphyrogenitus, "the Purple-born" was the fourth Emperor of the Macedonian dynasty of the Byzantine Empire, reigning from 913 to 959...

, the Croats had arrived in what is today Croatia in the early 7th century, however that claim is disputed and competing hypotheses date the event between the 6th and the 9th centuries. Eventually two dukedoms were formed—Duchy of Pannonia
Pannonian Croatia
Pannonian Croatia was a medieval duchy from the 7th to the 10th century located in the Pannonian Plain approximately between the rivers Drava and Sava in today's Croatia, but at times also considerably to the south of the Sava. Its capital was Sisak...

 and Duchy of Dalmatia, ruled by Ljudevit Posavski
Ljudevit Posavski
Ljudevit Posavski was a Croatian Duke of Pannonian Croatia from 810 to 823. The capital of his realm was in Sisak. As the ruler of the Pannonian Slavs, he led an unsuccessful resistance to Frankish domination. He held close ties with the Carantanian and Carniolan tribes and with the Serbian tribe...

 and Borna
Borna of Croatia
Borna was the Knez of Littoral Croatia in 803–821 under the Frankish Empire. He was the son of his predecessor, Višeslav.- Ruler of Dalmatia :...

, as attested by chronicles of Einhard
Einhard
Einhard was a Frankish scholar and courtier. Einhard was a dedicated servant of Charlemagne and his son Louis the Pious; his main work is a biography of Charlemagne, the Vita Karoli Magni, "one of the most precious literary bequests of the early Middle Ages."-Public life:Einhard was from the eastern...

 starting in the year 818. The record represents the first document of Croatian realms, vassal states of Francia at the time. The Frankish overlordship ended during the reign of Mislav
Mislav of Croatia
Mislav was the Duke of Littoral Croatia in 835–845.Mislav succeeded Vladislav as the Duke of Littoral Croatia. He ruled from Klis in central Dalmatia, when he made Klis Fortress seat to his throne. Mislav was pious ruler. He built the Church of Saint George in Putalj . Today's Kaštel Sućurac...

 two decades later. According to the Constantine VII christianization
Christianization
The historical phenomenon of Christianization is the conversion of individuals to Christianity or the conversion of entire peoples at once...

 of Croats began in the 7th century, but the claim is disputed and generally christianization is associated with the 9th century. The first native Croatian ruler recognised by the Pope
Pope
The Pope is the Bishop of Rome, a position that makes him the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church . In the Catholic Church, the Pope is regarded as the successor of Saint Peter, the Apostle...

 was duke Branimir, whom Pope John VIII
Pope John VIII
Pope John VIII was pope from December 13, 872 to December 16, 882. He is often considered one of the ablest pontiffs of the ninth century and the last bright spot on the papacy until Leo IX two centuries later....

 referred to as Dux Croatorum ("Duke of Croats") in 879.
Tomislav was the first ruler of Croatia who was styled a king in a letter from the Pope John X
Pope John X
Pope John X, Pope from March 914 to May 928, was deacon at Bologna when he attracted the attention of Theodora, the wife of Theophylact, Count of Tusculum, the most powerful noble in Rome, through whose influence he was elevated first to the see of Bologna and then to the archbishopric of...

, dating kingdom of Croatia to year 925. Tomislav defeated Hungarian and Bulgarian invasions, spreading the influence of Croatian kings. The medieval Croatian kingdom reached its peak in the 11th century during the reigns of Petar Krešimir IV
Petar Krešimir IV of Croatia
Peter Krešimir IV, called the Great , was a notably energetic King of Croatia from 1059 to his death in 1074/1075. He was the last great ruler of the Krešimirović branch of the House of Trpimirović....

 (1058–1074) and Dmitar Zvonimir (1075–1089). When Stjepan II died in 1091 ending the Trpimirović dynasty, Ladislaus I of Hungary claimed Croatian crown. Opposition to the claim led to a war
Battle of Gvozd Mountain
The Battle of Gvozd Mountain took place in the year 1097 and was fought on Petrova gora in central Croatia, between the army of Croatian king Petar Svačić and King Coloman I of Hungary...

 and personal union of Croatia and Hungary
Croatia in personal union with Hungary
Kingdom of Croatia after the succession crisis become a part of Kingdom of Hungary and — depending on sources — either was incorporated into Hungary or Croatia existed in a personal union with Hungary....

 in 1102, ruled by Coloman.

For the next four centuries, the Kingdom of Croatia was ruled by the Sabor (parliament) and a Ban
Ban of Croatia
Ban of Croatia was the title of local rulers and after 1102 viceroys of Croatia. From earliest periods of Croatian state, some provinces were ruled by Bans as a rulers representative and supreme military commander. In the 18th century, Croatian bans eventually become chief government officials in...

 (viceroy) appointed by the king. The period saw increasing threat of Ottoman
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

 conquest and struggle against the Republic of Venice
Republic of Venice
The Republic of Venice or Venetian Republic was a state originating from the city of Venice in Northeastern Italy. It existed for over a millennium, from the late 7th century until 1797. It was formally known as the Most Serene Republic of Venice and is often referred to as La Serenissima, in...

 for control of coastal areas. The Venetians gained control over most of Dalmatia by 1428, with exception of the city-state of Dubrovnik
Republic of Ragusa
The Republic of Ragusa or Republic of Dubrovnik was a maritime republic centered on the city of Dubrovnik in Dalmatia , that existed from 1358 to 1808...

 which became independent. Ottoman conquests
Hundred Years' Croatian–Ottoman War
The Hundred Years' Croatian–Ottoman War is the name for a sequence of conflicts, mostly of relatively low-intensity, between the Kingdom of Croatia, which in that period was ruled by a succession of dynasties and Ottoman Empires.- Time span :There are several different variations about the exact...

 led to the 1493 Battle of Krbava field
Battle of Krbava field
The Battle of Krbava field , was fought between the Ottoman Empire of Bayezid II and a Croatian army of the Kingdom of Croatia in personal union with the Kingdom of Hungary on September 9, 1493 in the Krbava field, a part of Lika region, southern Croatia...

 and 1526 Battle of Mohács
Battle of Mohács
The Battle of Mohács was fought on August 29, 1526 near Mohács, Hungary. In the battle, forces of the Kingdom of Hungary led by King Louis II of Hungary and Bohemia were defeated by forces of the Ottoman Empire led by Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent....

, both ending in decisive Ottoman victories. King Louis II died at Mohács, and in 1527, the Parliament on Cetin
Parliament on Cetin
The Parliament on Cetin was a gathering of the Croatian nobility in the town of Cetin caused by a monarchical crisis after the death of their king Louis II and a major defeat of the Kingdom of Hungary at the Battle of Mohács...

 chose Ferdinand I
Ferdinand I, Holy Roman Emperor
Ferdinand I was Holy Roman Emperor from 1558 and king of Bohemia and Hungary from 1526 until his death. Before his accession, he ruled the Austrian hereditary lands of the Habsburgs in the name of his elder brother, Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor.The key events during his reign were the contest...

 of the House of Habsburg as new ruler of Croatia, under the condition that he provide protection to Croatia against the Ottoman Empire while respecting its political rights. The period saw rise of native nobility such as the Frankopan
Frankopan
The Frankopans are a Croatian noble family. Also called Frankapan, Frangepán in Hungarian, and Frangipani in Italian.The Frankopan family is the leading princely Croatian aristocratic family which dates back to the 12th Century and even earlier to Roman times...

s and the Šubić
Šubic
The Šubić were one of the twelve tribes which constituted Croatian statehood in the Middle Ages; they held the county of Bribir in inland Dalmatia.-Origins:...

s to prominence and ultimately numerous Bans from the two families.

Habsburg Monarchy and Austria-Hungary




Following the decisive Ottoman victories, Croatia was split into civilian and military territories, with the partition formed in 1538. The military territories would become known as the Croatian Military Frontier and were directly controlled by the Austrian emperor. Ottoman advance
Hundred Years' Croatian–Ottoman War
The Hundred Years' Croatian–Ottoman War is the name for a sequence of conflicts, mostly of relatively low-intensity, between the Kingdom of Croatia, which in that period was ruled by a succession of dynasties and Ottoman Empires.- Time span :There are several different variations about the exact...

s in the Croatian territory continued until the 1593 Battle of Sisak
Battle of Sisak
The Battle of Sisak was fought on June 22, 1593, between Ottoman forces of the Bosnian governor-general, or Beylerbeyi, Hasan-paša Predojević, and forces of the Holy Roman Empire under the supreme command of the Styrian general Ruprecht von Eggenberg...

, the first decisive Ottoman defeat, and stabilisation of borders. During the Great Turkish War
Great Turkish War
The Great Turkish War refers to a series of conflicts between the Ottoman Empire and contemporary European powers, then joined into a Holy League, during the second half of the 17th century.-1667–1683:...

 (1667–1698), Slavonia
Slavonia
Slavonia is a geographical and historical region in eastern Croatia...

 was regained but western Bosnia, which had been part of Croatia before the Ottoman conquest, remained outside Croatian control. The present-day border between the two countries is a remnant of this outcome. Dalmatia
Dalmatia
Dalmatia is a historical region on the eastern coast of the Adriatic Sea. It stretches from the island of Rab in the northwest to the Bay of Kotor in the southeast. The hinterland, the Dalmatian Zagora, ranges from fifty kilometers in width in the north to just a few kilometers in the south....

, the southern part of the border, was similarly defined by the Fifth
Cretan War (1645–1669)
The Cretan War or War of Candia , as the Fifth Ottoman–Venetian War is better known, was a conflict between the Republic of Venice and her allies against the Ottoman Empire and the Barbary States, fought over the island of Crete, Venice's largest and richest overseas possession...

 and the Seventh Ottoman–Venetian Wars. The Ottoman wars
Croatian–Ottoman Wars
Croatian–Ottoman Wars can refer to one of the several conflicts between the Kingdom of Croatia and the Ottoman Empire:*Long campaign of the King Vladislas II of Hungary...

 instigated great demographic changes. Croats migrated towards Austria
Austria
Austria , officially the Republic of Austria , is a landlocked country of roughly 8.4 million people in Central Europe. It is bordered by the Czech Republic and Germany to the north, Slovakia and Hungary to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the...

 and the present-day Burgenland Croats
Burgenland Croats
Burgenland Croats are ethnic Croats in the Austrian state of Burgenland. Although an enclave hundreds of kilometres away from their original homeland, they have managed to preserve culture and language for centuries...

 are direct descendants of these settlers. To replace the fleeing Croats the Habsburgs called on the Orthodox
Eastern Orthodox Church
The Orthodox Church, officially called the Orthodox Catholic Church and commonly referred to as the Eastern Orthodox Church, is the second largest Christian denomination in the world, with an estimated 300 million adherents mainly in the countries of Belarus, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Georgia, Greece,...

 populations of Bosnia and Serbia
Serbia
Serbia , officially the Republic of Serbia , is a landlocked country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe, covering the southern part of the Carpathian basin and the central part of the Balkans...

 to provide military service in the Croatian Military Frontier. Serb migration into this region peaked during the Great Serb Migrations of 1690 and 1737–39.

Between 1797 and 1809 the First French Empire
First French Empire
The First French Empire , also known as the Greater French Empire or Napoleonic Empire, was the empire of Napoleon I of France...

 gradually occupied the entire eastern Adriatic coastline and a substantial part of its hinterland, ending the Venetian
Republic of Venice
The Republic of Venice or Venetian Republic was a state originating from the city of Venice in Northeastern Italy. It existed for over a millennium, from the late 7th century until 1797. It was formally known as the Most Serene Republic of Venice and is often referred to as La Serenissima, in...

 and the Ragusan republics, establishing the Illyrian Provinces
Illyrian provinces
The Illyrian Provinces was an autonomous province of the Napoleonic French Empire on the north and east coasts of the Adriatic Sea between 1809 and 1816. Its capital was established at Laybach...

. In response the Royal Navy
Royal Navy
The Royal Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the British Armed Forces. Founded in the 16th century, it is the oldest service branch and is known as the Senior Service...

 started the blockade of the Adriatic Sea
Adriatic campaign of 1807–1814
The Adriatic campaign was a minor theatre of war during the Napoleonic Wars in which a succession of small British Royal Navy squadrons and independent cruisers harried the combined naval forces of the First French Empire, the Kingdom of Italy, the Illyrian Provinces and the Kingdom of Naples...

 leading to the Battle of Vis
Battle of Lissa (1811)
The Battle of Lissa was a naval action fought between a British frigate squadron and a substantially larger squadron of French and Venetian frigates and smaller ships on 13 March 1811 during the Adriatic campaign of the Napoleonic Wars...

 in 1811. The Illyrian Provinces were captured by the Austrians in 1813, and absorbed by the Austrian Empire
Austrian Empire
The Austrian Empire was a modern era successor empire, which was centered on what is today's Austria and which officially lasted from 1804 to 1867. It was followed by the Empire of Austria-Hungary, whose proclamation was a diplomatic move that elevated Hungary's status within the Austrian Empire...

 following the Congress of Vienna
Congress of Vienna
The Congress of Vienna was a conference of ambassadors of European states chaired by Klemens Wenzel von Metternich, and held in Vienna from September, 1814 to June, 1815. The objective of the Congress was to settle the many issues arising from the French Revolutionary Wars, the Napoleonic Wars,...

 in 1815. This led to formation of the Kingdom of Dalmatia
Kingdom of Dalmatia
The Kingdom of Dalmatia was an administrative division of the Habsburg Monarchy from 1815 to 1918. Its capital was Zadar.-History:...

 and restoration of the Croatian Littoral
Croatian Littoral
The Croatian Littoral is a geographical term that refers to the narrow coastal strip along the Adriatic Sea in Croatia extending from east the city Rijeka south to Karlobag...

 to the Kingdom of Croatia, now both under the same crown.

The 1830s and 1840s saw romantic nationalism
Romantic nationalism
Romantic nationalism is the form of nationalism in which the state derives its political legitimacy as an organic consequence of the unity of those it governs...

 inspired the Croatian National Revival
Illyrian movement
The Illyrian movement , also Croatian national revival , was a cultural and political campaign with roots in the early modern period, and revived by a group of young Croatian intellectuals during the first half of 19th century, around the years of 1835–1849...

, a political and cultural campaign advocating unity of all South Slavs
South Slavs
The South Slavs are the southern branch of the Slavic peoples and speak South Slavic languages. Geographically, the South Slavs are native to the Balkan peninsula, the southern Pannonian Plain and the eastern Alps...

 in the empire. Its primary focus was establishment of a standard language as a counterweight to Hungarian
Hungarian language
Hungarian is a Uralic language, part of the Ugric group. With some 14 million speakers, it is one of the most widely spoken non-Indo-European languages in Europe....

, along with promotion of Croatian literature and culture. During the Hungarian Revolution of 1848
Hungarian Revolution of 1848
The Hungarian Revolution of 1848 was one of many of the European Revolutions of 1848 and closely linked to other revolutions of 1848 in the Habsburg areas...

 Croatia sided with the Austrians, Ban Josip Jelačić
Josip Jelacic
Count Josip Jelačić of Bužim was the Ban of Croatia between 23 March 1848 and 19 May 1859...

 helping defeat the Hungarian forces in 1849, and ushering a period of Germanization policy. By the 1860s, failure of the policy became apparent, leading to the Austro-Hungarian Compromise of 1867 and creation of a personal union
Personal union
A personal union is the combination by which two or more different states have the same monarch while their boundaries, their laws and their interests remain distinct. It should not be confused with a federation which is internationally considered a single state...

 between the crowns of the Austrian Empire
Austrian Empire
The Austrian Empire was a modern era successor empire, which was centered on what is today's Austria and which officially lasted from 1804 to 1867. It was followed by the Empire of Austria-Hungary, whose proclamation was a diplomatic move that elevated Hungary's status within the Austrian Empire...

 and the Kingdom of Hungary
Kingdom of Hungary
The Kingdom of Hungary comprised present-day Hungary, Slovakia and Croatia , Transylvania , Carpatho Ruthenia , Vojvodina , Burgenland , and other smaller territories surrounding present-day Hungary's borders...

. The treaty left the issue of Croatia's status to Hungary, and the status was resolved by the Croatian–Hungarian Settlement of 1868, when kingdoms of Croatia and Slavonia were united. The Kingdom of Dalmatia remained under de facto Austrian control, while Rijeka
Rijeka
Rijeka is the principal seaport and the third largest city in Croatia . It is located on Kvarner Bay, an inlet of the Adriatic Sea and has a population of 128,735 inhabitants...

 retained the status of Corpus separatum
Corpus separatum (Fiume)
The Corpus separatum of Fiume was the name of the legal and political status of the city of Fiume , instituted by Empress Maria Theresa in 1776, determining the semi-autonomous status of Fiume within the Habsburg Empire until the fall of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1918 - the longest-lasting...

 introduced in 1779. After Austria-Hungary
Austria-Hungary
Austria-Hungary , more formally known as the Kingdoms and Lands Represented in the Imperial Council and the Lands of the Holy Hungarian Crown of Saint Stephen, was a constitutional monarchic union between the crowns of the Austrian Empire and the Kingdom of Hungary in...

 occupied Bosnia and Herzegovina following the 1878 Treaty of Berlin, the Croatian Military Frontier was abolished and the territory returned to Croatia in 1881. Renewed efforts to reform Austria-Hungary
United States of Greater Austria
The United States of Greater Austria was an idea created by a group of scholars surrounding the Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand that never came to pass...

, entailing federalisation with Croatia as a federal unit, were stopped by advent of World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

.

Kingdom of Yugoslavia and World War II


On 29 October 1918 the Croatian Sabor declared independence and decided to join the newly formed State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs
State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs
The State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs was a short-lived state formed from the southernmost parts of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy after its dissolution at the end of the World War I by the resident population of Slovenes, Croats, and Serbs...

, which in turn entered into union with the Kingdom of Serbia
Kingdom of Serbia
The Kingdom of Serbia was created when Prince Milan Obrenović, ruler of the Principality of Serbia, was crowned King in 1882. The Principality of Serbia was ruled by the Karađorđevic dynasty from 1817 onwards . The Principality, suzerain to the Porte, had expelled all Ottoman troops by 1867, de...

 on 4 December 1918 to form the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes. The 1921 constitution
Vidovdan Constitution
The Vidovdan Constitution was the first constitution of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes. It was approved by the Constitutional Assembly on June 28, 1921 despite the opposition boycotting the vote. The Constitution is named after the feast of St. Vitus , a Serbian holiday. The Constitution...

 defining the country as a unitary state
Unitary state
A unitary state is a state governed as one single unit in which the central government is supreme and any administrative divisions exercise only powers that their central government chooses to delegate...

 and abolition of historical administrative divisions effectively ended Croatian autonomy. The new constitution was opposed by the most widely supported national political party—the Croatian Peasant Party
Croatian Peasant Party
The Croatian Peasant Party is a center and socially conservative political party in Croatia.-Austria-Hungary:The Croatian People's Peasant Party was formed on December 22, 1904 by Antun Radić along with his brother Stjepan Radić. The party contested elections for the first time in the Kingdom of...

 (HSS) led by Stjepan Radić
Stjepan Radic
Stjepan Radić was a Croatian politician and the founder of the Croatian Peasant Party in 1905. Radić is credited with galvanizing the peasantry of Croatia into a viable political force...

. The political situation deteriorated further as Radić was assassinated in National Assembly in 1928, leading to the dictatorship
Dictatorship
A dictatorship is defined as an autocratic form of government in which the government is ruled by an individual, the dictator. It has three possible meanings:...

 of King Alexander
Alexander I of Yugoslavia
Alexander I , also known as Alexander the Unifier was the first king of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia as well as the last king of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes .-Childhood:...

 in January 1929. The dictatorship formally ended in 1931 when the king imposed a more unitarian constitution, and changed the name of the country to Yugoslavia. The HSS, now led by Vladko Maček
Vladko Macek
Vladko Maček was a Croatian politician active within the Kingdom of Yugoslavia in the first half of the 20th century. He led the Croatian Peasant Party following the assassination of Stjepan Radić, and all through World War II.- Early life :Maček was born to a Slovene-Czech family in the village...

, continued to advocate federalization of Yugoslavia, resulting in the Cvetković–Maček Agreement of August 1939 and the autonomous Banovina of Croatia
Banovina of Croatia
The Banovina of Croatia or Banate of Croatia was a province of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia between 1939 and 1943 . Its capital was at Zagreb and it included most of present-day Croatia along with portions of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia...

. The Yugoslav government retained control of defence, internal security, foreign affairs, trade, and transport while other matters were left to the Croatian Sabor and a crown-appointed Ban.
In April 1941, Yugoslavia was occupied
Invasion of Yugoslavia
The Invasion of Yugoslavia , also known as the April War , was the Axis Powers' attack on the Kingdom of Yugoslavia which began on 6 April 1941 during World War II...

 by Germany
Nazi Germany
Nazi Germany , also known as the Third Reich , but officially called German Reich from 1933 to 1943 and Greater German Reich from 26 June 1943 onward, is the name commonly used to refer to the state of Germany from 1933 to 1945, when it was a totalitarian dictatorship ruled by...

 and Italy
Kingdom of Italy (1861–1946)
The Kingdom of Italy was a state forged in 1861 by the unification of Italy under the influence of the Kingdom of Sardinia, which was its legal predecessor state...

. Following the invasion the territory, parts of Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the region of Syrmia
Syrmia
Syrmia is a fertile region of the Pannonian Plain in Europe, between the Danube and Sava rivers. It is divided between Serbia in the east and Croatia in the west....

 were incorporated into the Independent State of Croatia
Independent State of Croatia
The Independent State of Croatia was a World War II puppet state of Nazi Germany, established on a part of Axis-occupied Yugoslavia. The NDH was founded on 10 April 1941, after the invasion of Yugoslavia by the Axis powers. All of Bosnia and Herzegovina was annexed to NDH, together with some parts...

 (NDH), a Nazi-backed puppet state
Puppet state
A puppet state is a nominal sovereign of a state who is de facto controlled by a foreign power. The term refers to a government controlled by the government of another country like a puppeteer controls the strings of a marionette...

. Parts of Dalmatia were annexed by Italy and the northern Croatian regions of Baranja
Baranya (region)
Baranya or Baranja is a geographical region between the Danube and the Drava rivers. Its territory is divided between Hungary and Croatia...

 and Međimurje were annexed by Hungary. The NDH regime was led by Ante Pavelić
Ante Pavelic
Ante Pavelić was a Croatian fascist leader, revolutionary, and politician. He ruled as Poglavnik or head, of the Independent State of Croatia , a World War II puppet state of Nazi Germany in Axis-occupied Yugoslavia...

 and ultranationalist Ustaše
Ustaše
The Ustaša - Croatian Revolutionary Movement was a Croatian fascist anti-Yugoslav separatist movement. The ideology of the movement was a blend of fascism, Nazism, and Croatian nationalism. The Ustaše supported the creation of a Greater Croatia that would span to the River Drina and to the border...

. The regime introduced anti-semitic laws and conducted a campaign of ethnic cleansing and genocide against Serb and Roma inhabitants of the NDH, exemplified by the Jasenovac
Jasenovac concentration camp
Jasenovac concentration camp was the largest extermination camp in the Independent State of Croatia and occupied Yugoslavia during World War II...

 and Stara Gradiška
Stara Gradiška concentration camp
Stara Gradiška was the most notorious concentration and extermination camp in Croatia during World War II, mainly due to the crimes which were committed against women and children. The camp was specially constructed for women and children of Serb, Jew, and Romani ethnicity...

 concentration camps. It is estimated that out of 39,000 Jews
Jews
The Jews , also known as the Jewish people, are a nation and ethnoreligious group originating in the Israelites or Hebrews of the Ancient Near East. The Jewish ethnicity, nationality, and religion are strongly interrelated, as Judaism is the traditional faith of the Jewish nation...

 in the country only 9,000 survived; the rest were either killed or deported to Germany, both by the local authorities and the German Army itself. Croatian and Serbian sources disagree on the exact figures. Furthermore 320,000 Serbs were killed in the territory of present-day Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina—roughly corresponding to NDH territory. This was either by the regime, as members of armed resistance, or as Axis collaborators
Axis Powers
The Axis powers , also known as the Axis alliance, Axis nations, Axis countries, or just the Axis, was an alignment of great powers during the mid-20th century that fought World War II against the Allies. It began in 1936 with treaties of friendship between Germany and Italy and between Germany and...

. In total there were 537,000 Serb casualties throughout Yugoslavia in the war. At the same time, more than 200,000 Croats were killed in the NDH, likewise in various roles.

A resistance movement soon emerged. In June 1941 the 1st Sisak Partisan Detachment was formed near Sisak
Sisak
Sisak is a city in central Croatia. The city's population in 2011 was 33,049, with a total of 49,699 in the administrative region and it is also the administrative centre of the Sisak-Moslavina county...

, as the first military unit formed by a resistance movement in occupied Europe. This sparked the beginning of the Yugoslav Partisan movement, a communist multi-ethnic anti-fascist resistance group led by Josip Broz Tito
Josip Broz Tito
Marshal Josip Broz Tito – 4 May 1980) was a Yugoslav revolutionary and statesman. While his presidency has been criticized as authoritarian, Tito was a popular public figure both in Yugoslavia and abroad, viewed as a unifying symbol for the nations of the Yugoslav federation...

. The movement grew rapidly and at the Tehran Conference
Tehran Conference
The Tehran Conference was the meeting of Joseph Stalin, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill between November 28 and December 1, 1943, most of which was held at the Soviet Embassy in Tehran, Iran. It was the first World War II conference amongst the Big Three in which Stalin was present...

 in December 1943 the Partisans gained recognition from the Allies
Allies of World War II
The Allies of World War II were the countries that opposed the Axis powers during the Second World War . Former Axis states contributing to the Allied victory are not considered Allied states...

. With Allied support in logistics, equipment, training and air power, and with the assistance of Soviet troops
Red Army
The Workers' and Peasants' Red Army started out as the Soviet Union's revolutionary communist combat groups during the Russian Civil War of 1918-1922. It grew into the national army of the Soviet Union. By the 1930s the Red Army was among the largest armies in history.The "Red Army" name refers to...

 taking part in the 1944 Belgrade Offensive
Belgrade Offensive
The Belgrade Offensive or the Belgrade Strategic Offensive Operation was an offensive military operation in which Belgrade was conquered from the German Wehrmacht by the joint efforts of the Yugoslav Partisans and the Soviet Red Army...

, Partisans gained control of Yugoslavia and border regions of Italy and Austria by May 1945. Political aspirations of the movement were reflected in the ZAVNOH (National Anti-Fascist Council of the People's Liberation of Croatia), which developed in 1943 as the bearer of Croatian statehood and later transformed into the Parliament of Croatia in 1945, and AVNOJ
AVNOJ
The Anti-Fascist Council of the People's Liberation of Yugoslavia, known more commonly by its Yugoslav abbreviation AVNOJ, was the political umbrella organization for the national liberation councils of the Yugoslav resistance against the World War II Axis occupation, eventually becoming the...

—its counterpart at Yugoslav level.

Federal Yugoslavia and independence


After the World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

, Croatia became a single-party Socialist federal unit
Socialist Republic of Croatia
Socialist Republic of Croatia was a sovereign constituent country of the second Yugoslavia. It came to existence during World War II, becoming a socialist state after the war, and was also renamed four times in its existence . It was the second largest republic in Yugoslavia by territory and...

 of the SFR Yugoslavia
Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was the Yugoslav state that existed from the abolition of the Yugoslav monarchy until it was dissolved in 1992 amid the Yugoslav Wars. It was a socialist state and a federation made up of six socialist republics: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia,...

, ruled by the Communists
League of Communists of Croatia
League of Communists of Croatia was the Croatian branch of the League of Communists of Yugoslavia . Until 1952, it was known as Communist Party of Croatia .- History :...

, but enjoying a degree of autonomy within the federation. In 1967, Croatian authors and linguists published a Declaration on the Status and Name of the Croatian Standard Language
Declaration on the Status and Name of the Croatian Standard Language
The Declaration on the Status and Name of the Croatian Literary Language was a document brought by Croat scholars. The declaration was published on March 13, 1967 in the Telegram, Yugoslav newspapers for social and cultural issues, nr. 359, 17 March 1967...

 demanding greater autonomy for Croatian language
Croatian language
Croatian is the collective name for the standard language and dialects spoken by Croats, principally in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Serbian province of Vojvodina and other neighbouring countries...

. The declaration contributed to a national movement seeking greater civil rights and decentralization of the Yugoslav economy, culminating in the Croatian Spring
Croatian Spring
The Croatian Spring was a political movement from the early 1970s that called for greater rights for Croatia which was then part of Yugoslavia as well as democratic and economic reforms.-History:...

 of 1971, suppressed by Yugoslav leadership. Still, the 1974 Yugoslav constitution
Constitution of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
The Constitution of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was the supreme law of S.F.R. Yugoslavia and its predecessor, the Federal People's Republic of Yugoslavia .-Federal constitutions:...

 gave increased autonomy to federal units, basically fulfilling a goal of the Croatian Spring, and providing a legal basis for independence of the federative constituents.

In the 1980s the political situation in Yugoslavia deteriorated with national tension fanned by the 1986 Serbian SANU Memorandum
Memorandum of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts
The Memorandum of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts was a draft document produced by a 14-member committee composed by members of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts from 1985 to 1986, presided by Kosta Mihailović...

 and the 1989 coups in Vojvodina, Kosovo and Montenegro
Montenegro
Montenegro Montenegrin: Crna Gora Црна Гора , meaning "Black Mountain") is a country located in Southeastern Europe. It has a coast on the Adriatic Sea to the south-west and is bordered by Croatia to the west, Bosnia and Herzegovina to the northwest, Serbia to the northeast and Albania to the...

. In January 1990, the Communist Party fragmented along national lines, with the Croatian faction
Political faction
A political faction is a grouping of individuals, such as a political party, a trade union, or other group with a political purpose. A faction or political party may include fragmented sub-factions, “parties within a party," which may be referred to as power blocs, or voting blocs. The individuals...

 demanding a looser federation. In the same year, the first multi-party elections
Croatian parliamentary election, 1990
Parliamentary elections were held in Croatia on 22 April 1990, with a second round of voting on 6 May. The first free elections since multi-party politics were introduced, they resulted in a victory for the Croatian Democratic Union, which won 55 of the 80 seats...

 were held in Croatia, with Franjo Tuđman's win raising nationalist tensions further. Serbs in Croatia
Serbs of Croatia
Višeslav of Serbia, a contemporary of Charlemagne , ruled the Županias of Neretva, Tara, Piva, Lim, his ancestral lands. According to the Royal Frankish Annals , Duke of Pannonia Ljudevit Posavski fled, during the Frankish invasion, from his seat in Sisak to the Serbs in western Bosnia, who...

 left Sabor and declared the autonomy of areas that would soon become the unrecognized Republic of Serbian Krajina
Republic of Serbian Krajina
The Republic of Serbian Krajina was a self-proclaimed Serb entity within Croatia. Established in 1991, it was not recognized internationally. It formally existed from 1991 to 1995, having been initiated a year earlier via smaller separatist regions. The name Krajina means "frontier"...

, intent on achieving independence from Croatia. As tensions rose, Croatia declared independence
Croatian independence referendum, 1991
An independence referendum was held in Croatia on 19 May 1991. The result was 95.7% in favour, with a turnout of 83.6%.-Background:The Croatian parliament made the decision to hold the referendum on 2 May.-Results:-Aftermath:...

 in June 1991, however the declaration came into effect on 8 October 1991.

The tensions escalated into the Croatian War of Independence
Croatian War of Independence
The Croatian War of Independence was fought from 1991 to 1995 between forces loyal to the government of Croatia—which had declared independence from the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia —and the Serb-controlled Yugoslav People's Army and local Serb forces, with the JNA ending its combat...

 when the Yugoslav National Army and various Serb paramilitaries
Paramilitary
A paramilitary is a force whose function and organization are similar to those of a professional military, but which is not considered part of a state's formal armed forces....

 attacked Croatia. By the end of 1991, a high intensity war fought along a wide front reduced Croatia to control of about two-thirds of its territory. On 15 January 1992, Croatia gained diplomatic recognition
Diplomatic recognition
Diplomatic recognition in international law is a unilateral political act with domestic and international legal consequences, whereby a state acknowledges an act or status of another state or government in control of a state...

 by the European Economic Community
European Economic Community
The European Economic Community The European Economic Community (EEC) The European Economic Community (EEC) (also known as the Common Market in the English-speaking world, renamed the European Community (EC) in 1993The information in this article primarily covers the EEC's time as an independent...

 members, and subsequently the United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

. The war effectively ended in 1995 with a decisive victory
Operation Storm
Operation Storm is the code name given to a large-scale military operation carried out by Croatian Armed Forces, in conjunction with the Army of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, to gain back control of parts of Croatia which had been claimed by separatist ethnic Serbs, since early...

 by Croatia in August 1995. The remaining occupied areas were restored to Croatia pursuant to the Erdut Agreement
Erdut Agreement
The Erdut Agreement , officially the Basic Agreement on the Region of Eastern Slavonia, Baranja and Western Sirmium, was the agreement reached on November 12, 1995 between the authorities of the Republic of Croatia and the local Serb authorities of the Eastern Slavonia, Baranja and Western Syrmia...

 of November 1995, with the process concluded in January 1998.

Geography




Croatia is located in Central Europe
Central Europe
Central Europe or alternatively Middle Europe is a region of the European continent lying between the variously defined areas of Eastern and Western Europe...

 and Southeast Europe
Southeast Europe
Southeast Europe or Southeastern Europe is a relatively recent political designation for the states of the Balkans. Writers such as Maria Todorova and Vesna Goldsworthy have suggested the use of the term Southeastern Europe to replace the word Balkans for the region, to minimize potential...

, bordering Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia in the east, Slovenia
Slovenia
Slovenia , officially the Republic of Slovenia , is a country in Central and Southeastern Europe touching the Alps and bordering the Mediterranean. Slovenia borders Italy to the west, Croatia to the south and east, Hungary to the northeast, and Austria to the north, and also has a small portion of...

 in the north-west, Hungary
Hungary
Hungary , officially the Republic of Hungary , is a landlocked country in Central Europe. It is situated in the Carpathian Basin and is bordered by Slovakia to the north, Ukraine and Romania to the east, Serbia and Croatia to the south, Slovenia to the southwest and Austria to the west. The...

 in the north-east and Montenegro
Montenegro
Montenegro Montenegrin: Crna Gora Црна Гора , meaning "Black Mountain") is a country located in Southeastern Europe. It has a coast on the Adriatic Sea to the south-west and is bordered by Croatia to the west, Bosnia and Herzegovina to the northwest, Serbia to the northeast and Albania to the...

 and the Adriatic Sea
Adriatic Sea
The Adriatic Sea is a body of water separating the Italian Peninsula from the Balkan peninsula, and the system of the Apennine Mountains from that of the Dinaric Alps and adjacent ranges...

 in the south. It lies mostly between latitudes 42°
42nd parallel north
The 42nd parallel north is a circle of latitude that is 42 degrees north of the Earth's equatorial plane. It crosses Europe, the Mediterranean Sea, Asia, the Pacific Ocean, North America, and the Atlantic Ocean....

 and 47° N
47th parallel north
The 47th parallel north is a circle of latitude that is 47 degrees north of the Earth's equatorial plane. It crosses Europe, Asia, the Pacific Ocean, North America, and the Atlantic Ocean....

 and longitudes 13°
13th meridian east
The meridian 13° east of Greenwich is a line of longitude that extends from the North Pole across the Arctic Ocean, Europe, Africa, the Atlantic Ocean, the Southern Ocean, and Antarctica to the South Pole....

 and 20° E
20th meridian east
The meridian 20° east of Greenwich is a line of longitude that extends from the North Pole across the Arctic Ocean, Europe, Africa, the Atlantic and Indian oceans, the Southern Ocean, and Antarctica to the South Pole....

. Part of the territory in the extreme south is separated from the rest of the mainland by a short coastline strip belonging to Bosnia and Herzegovina around Neum
Neum
Neum is the only coastal town in Bosnia and Herzegovina. It comprises of coastline, the country's only access to the Adriatic Sea. As of 2009, municipal population was of 4,605 and the one of Neum main town was of 4,268 .-Features:Neum has steep hills, sandy beaches, and several large tourist...

.

The territory covers 56594 square kilometres (21,851 sq mi), consisting of 56414 square kilometres (21,782 sq mi) of land and 128 square kilometres (49 sq mi) of water. It is the 127th largest country largest in the world. Elevation ranges from the mountains of the Dinaric Alps
Dinaric Alps
The Dinaric Alps or Dinarides form a mountain chain in Southern Europe, spanning areas of Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo, Albania and Montenegro....

 with the highest point of the Dinara
Dinara
Dinara is a mountain located on the border of Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. One of its summits, also called Dinara, is the highest point in Croatia at 1,831 m and a prominence of 728 m.-Etymology:...

 peak at 1831 metres (6,007.2 ft) near the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina in the south to the shore of the Adriatic Sea which makes up its entire south-west border. Insular Croatia consists of over a thousand islands and islets varying in size, 48 of which are permanently inhabited. The largest islands are Cres
Cres
Cres is an Adriatic island in Croatia. It is one of the northern island in the Kvarner Gulf and can be reached via ferry from the island Krk or from the Istrian peninsula ....

 and Krk
Krk
Krk is a Croatian island in the northern Adriatic Sea, located near Rijeka in the Bay of Kvarner and part of the Primorje-Gorski Kotar county....

, each of them having an area of around 405 km2.

The hilly northern parts of Hrvatsko Zagorje
Hrvatsko Zagorje
Hrvatsko Zagorje is a region north of Zagreb, Croatia. It comprises the whole area north of Medvednica mountain up to Slovenia in the north and west, and up to the regions of Međimurje and Podravina in the north and east...

 and the flat plains of Slavonia
Slavonia
Slavonia is a geographical and historical region in eastern Croatia...

 in the east (which is part of the Pannonian Basin
Pannonian Basin
The Pannonian Basin or Carpathian Basin is a large basin in East-Central Europe.The geomorphological term Pannonian Plain is more widely used for roughly the same region though with a somewhat different sense - meaning only the lowlands, the plain that remained when the Pliocene Pannonian Sea dried...

) are traversed by major rivers such as Sava, Drava
Drava
Drava or Drave is a river in southern Central Europe, a tributary of the Danube. It sources in Toblach/Dobbiaco, Italy, and flows east through East Tirol and Carinthia in Austria, into Slovenia , and then southeast, passing through Croatia and forming most of the border between Croatia and...

, Kupa
Kupa
Kupa may refer to:*Kupa River, a river in Croatia and Slovenia*Kupa River , a river in Lithuania*Kupa River in Siberia, see Kuta River*Kupa Synagogue, a synagogue in Krakow*Kupa, Hungary, a village in Northern Hungary...

 and Danube
Danube
The Danube is a river in the Central Europe and the Europe's second longest river after the Volga. It is classified as an international waterway....

. The Danube, Europe's second longest river, runs through the city of Vukovar
Vukovar
Vukovar is a city in eastern Croatia, and the biggest river port in Croatia located at the confluence of the Vuka river and the Danube. Vukovar is the center of the Vukovar-Syrmia County...

 in the extreme east and forms part of the border with Serbia. The central and southern regions near the Adriatic coastline and islands consist of low mountains and forested highlands. Natural resources found in the country in quantities significant enough for production include oil, coal, bauxite, low-grade iron ore, calcium, gypsum, natural asphalt, silica, mica, clays, salt and hydropower.

Karst topography
Karst topography
Karst topography is a geologic formation shaped by the dissolution of a layer or layers of soluble bedrock, usually carbonate rock such as limestone or dolomite, but has also been documented for weathering resistant rocks like quartzite given the right conditions.Due to subterranean drainage, there...

 makes up about half of Croatia and is especially prominent in the Dinaric Alps. There are a number of deep caves in Croatia, 49 of which are deeper than 250 m (820.21 ft), 14 of them deeper than 500 m (1,640.42 ft) and three deeper than 1000 m (3,280.84 ft). Croatia's most famous lakes are the Plitvice lakes, a system of 16 lakes with waterfalls connecting them over dolomite
Dolomite
Dolomite is a carbonate mineral composed of calcium magnesium carbonate CaMg2. The term is also used to describe the sedimentary carbonate rock dolostone....

 and limestone
Limestone
Limestone is a sedimentary rock composed largely of the minerals calcite and aragonite, which are different crystal forms of calcium carbonate . Many limestones are composed from skeletal fragments of marine organisms such as coral or foraminifera....

 cascades. The lakes are renowned for their distinctive colours, ranging from turquoise to mint green, grey or blue.

Climate



Most of Croatia has a moderately warm and rainy continental climate
Continental climate
Continental climate is a climate characterized by important annual variation in temperature due to the lack of significant bodies of water nearby...

 as defined by the Köppen climate classification
Köppen climate classification
The Köppen climate classification is one of the most widely used climate classification systems. It was first published by Crimea German climatologist Wladimir Köppen in 1884, with several later modifications by Köppen himself, notably in 1918 and 1936...

. Mean monthly temperature ranges between -3 °C (in January) and 18 °C (64.4 °F) (in July). The coldest parts of the country are Lika
Lika
Lika is a mountainous region in central Croatia, roughly bound by the Velebit mountain from the southwest and the Plješevica mountain from the northeast. On the north-west end Lika is bounded by Ogulin-Plaški basin, and on the south-east by the Malovan pass...

 and Gorski Kotar
Gorski kotar
Gorski kotar is the mountainous region in Croatia between Karlovac and Rijeka. Together with Lika and the Ogulin-Plaški valley it forms Mountainous Croatia. Because 63% of its surface is forested it is popularly called the green lungs of Croatia or Croatian Switzerland...

 where snowy forested climate is found at elevations above 1200 metres (3,937 ft). The warmest areas of Croatia are at the Adriatic coast and especially in its immediate hinterland characterized by the Mediterranean climate
Mediterranean climate
A Mediterranean climate is the climate typical of most of the lands in the Mediterranean Basin, and is a particular variety of subtropical climate...

, as the temperature highs are moderated by the sea. Consequently, temperature peaks are more pronounced in the continental areas—the lowest temperature of -35.5 °C was recorded on 3 February 1919 in Čakovec
Cakovec
Čakovec is a city in northern Croatia, located around 90 kilometres north of Zagreb, the Croatian capital. Čakovec is both the county seat and largest city of Međimurje County, the northernmost, smallest and most densely populated Croatian county.-Population:...

, and the highest temperature of 42.4 °C (108.3 °F) was recorded on 5 July 1950 in Karlovac
Karlovac
Karlovac is a city and municipality in central Croatia. The city proper has a population of 49,082, while the municipality has a population of 59,395 inhabitants .Karlovac is the administrative centre of Karlovac County...

.

Mean annual precipitation ranges between 600 millimetres (23.6 in) and 3500 millimetres (137.8 in) depending on geographic region and prevailing climate type. The least precipitation is recorded in the outer islands (Vis, Lastovo
Lastovo
Lastovo is an island municipality in the Dubrovnik-Neretva County in Croatia. The municipality consists of 46 islands with a total population of 792 people, of which 93% are ethnic Croats, and a land area of approximately . The biggest island in the municipality is also named Lastovo, as is the...

, Biševo
Biševo
Biševo is an island in the Adriatic Sea in Croatia. It is situated in the middle of the Dalmatian archipelago, five kilometers southwest of the Island of Vis. Its area is 5.8 km and it has a population of 11 . It is composed of limestone; the highest point is Straženica, 239 m high...

, Svetac) and in the eastern parts of Slavonia, however in the latter case, it is mostly occurring during the growing season
Growing season
In botany, horticulture, and agriculture the growing season is the period of each year when native plants and ornamental plants grow; and when crops can be grown....

. The maximum precipitation levels are observed on the Dinara mountain range and in Gorski kotar. Prevailing winds in the interior are light to moderate northeast or southwest, and in the coastal area prevailing winds are determined by local area features. Higher wind velocities are more often recorded in cooler months along the coast, generally as bura
Bora (wind)
Bora or Bura is a northern to north-eastern katabatic wind in the Adriatic, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Montenegro, Italy, Greece, Slovenia, and Turkey....

 or less frequently as sirocco
Sirocco
Sirocco, scirocco, , jugo or, rarely, siroc is a Mediterranean wind that comes from the Sahara and reaches hurricane speeds in North Africa and Southern Europe. It is known in North Africa by the Arabic word qibli or ghibli Sirocco, scirocco, , jugo or, rarely, siroc is a Mediterranean wind...

. The sunniest parts of the country are the outer islands, Hvar and Korčula
Korcula
Korčula is an island in the Adriatic Sea, in the Dubrovnik-Neretva County of Croatia. The island has an area of ; long and on average wide — and lies just off the Dalmatian coast. Its 16,182 inhabitants make it the second most populous Adriatic island after Krk...

, where more than 2700 hours of sunshine are recorded per year, followed by the southern Adriatic Sea area in general, northern Adriatic coast, and Slavonia, all with more than 2000 hours of sunshine per year.

Biodiversity




Croatia can be subdivided between a number of ecoregion
Ecoregion
An ecoregion , sometimes called a bioregion, is an ecologically and geographically defined area that is smaller than an ecozone and larger than an ecosystem. Ecoregions cover relatively large areas of land or water, and contain characteristic, geographically distinct assemblages of natural...

s because of its climate and geomorphology, and the country is consequently one of the richest in Europe in terms of biodiversity. There are four types of biogeographical regions in Croatia—Mediterranean along the coast and in its immediate hinterland, Alpine in most of Lika and Gorski Kotar, Pannonian along Drava and Danube, and continental in the remaining areas. One of the most significant are karst
KARST
Kilometer-square Area Radio Synthesis Telescope is a Chinese telescope project to which FAST is a forerunner. KARST is a set of large spherical reflectors on karst landforms, which are bowlshaped limestone sinkholes named after the Kras region in Slovenia and Northern Italy. It will consist of...

 habitats which include submerged karst, such as Zrmanja
Zrmanja
Zrmanja is a river in southern Lika and northern Dalmatia, Croatia. It is long and its basin covers an area of .It was known to the ancient Romans as Tedanius. The spring of Zrmanja is located in southern part of Lika under Postak - the southern peak of Pljesevica mountain, and close to south end...

 and Krka
Krka (Croatia)
Krka is a river in Croatia's Dalmatia region, famous for its numerous waterfalls. It is long and its basin covers an area of .Possibly the river called Catarbates by the ancient Greeks, it was known to the ancient Romans as Titius, Corcoras, or Korkoras.The river has its source near the border...

 canyons and tufa barriers, as well as underground habitats. The karst geology harbours approximately 7,000 caves and pits, some of which are habitat of the only known aquatic cave vertebrate
Vertebrate
Vertebrates are animals that are members of the subphylum Vertebrata . Vertebrates are the largest group of chordates, with currently about 58,000 species described. Vertebrates include the jawless fishes, bony fishes, sharks and rays, amphibians, reptiles, mammals, and birds...

—the olm
Olm
The olm, or proteus , is a blind amphibian endemic to the subterranean waters of caves of the Dinaric karst of southern Europe. It lives in the waters that flow underground through this extensive limestone region including waters of the Soča river basin near Trieste in Italy, through to southern...

. Forests are also significantly present in the country, as they cover 2490000 hectares (6,152,918.6 acre) representing 44% of Croatian land surface. The other habitat types include wetlands, grasslands, bogs, fens, scrub habitats, coastal and marine habitats. In terms of phytogeography
Phytogeography
Phytogeography , also called geobotany, is the branch of biogeography that is concerned with the geographic distribution of plant species...

, Croatia is a part of the Boreal Kingdom
Boreal Kingdom
The Boreal Kingdom or Holarctic Kingdom is a floristic kingdom identified by botanist Ronald Good , which includes the temperate to Arctic portions of North America and Eurasia. Its flora is inherited from the ancient supercontinent of Laurasia...

 and is a part of Illyrian and Central European provinces of the Circumboreal Region
Circumboreal Region
The Circumboreal Region is a floristic region within the Holarctic Kingdom in Eurasia and North America, as delineated by such geobotanists as Josias Braun-Blanquet and Armen Takhtajan....

 and the Adriatic province of the Mediterranean Region. The World Wide Fund for Nature
World Wide Fund for Nature
The World Wide Fund for Nature is an international non-governmental organization working on issues regarding the conservation, research and restoration of the environment, formerly named the World Wildlife Fund, which remains its official name in Canada and the United States...

 divides Croatia between three ecoregions—Pannonian mixed forests, Dinaric Mountains mixed forests
Dinaric Mountains mixed forests
The Dinaric Mountains mixed forests form a terrestrial ecoregion of Europe according to both the WWF and Digital Map of European Ecological Regions by the European Environment Agency. It belongs to the Temperate Broadleaf and Mixed Forests Biome, and to the Palearctic ecozone.-Distribution:The...

 and Illyrian deciduous forests
Illyrian deciduous forests
The Illyrian deciduous forests form a terrestrial ecoregion of Europe according to both the WWF and Digital Map of European Ecological Regions by the European Environment Agency...

.


There are 37,000 known species in Croatia, but their actual number is estimated to be between 50,000 and 100,000. The claim is supported by nearly 400 new taxa of invertebrate
Invertebrate
An invertebrate is an animal without a backbone. The group includes 97% of all animal species – all animals except those in the chordate subphylum Vertebrata .Invertebrates form a paraphyletic group...

s discovered in Croatia in the first half of the 2000s alone. There are more than a thousand endemic species, especially in Velebit and Biokovo mountains, Adriatic islands and karst rivers. Legislation protects 1,131 species. The most serious threat to them is loss and degradation of habitats. A further problem is presented by appearance of invasive alien species, especially Caulerpa taxifolia
Caulerpa taxifolia
Caulerpa taxifolia is a species of seaweed, an alga of the genus Caulerpa. Native to the Indian Ocean, it has been widely used ornamentally in aquariums. The alga has a stem which spreads horizontally just above the seafloor, and from this stem grow vertical fern-like pinnae, whose blades are flat...

 algae. The invasive algae are regularly monitored and removed to protect the benthic habitat
Benthic zone
The benthic zone is the ecological region at the lowest level of a body of water such as an ocean or a lake, including the sediment surface and some sub-surface layers. Organisms living in this zone are called benthos. They generally live in close relationship with the substrate bottom; many such...

. Indigenous sorts of cultivated plants and breeds of domesticated animals are also numerous. Those include five breeds of horses, five breeds of cattle, eight breeds of sheep, two breeds of pigs and a poultry breed. Even the indigenous breeds include nine endangered or critically endangered ones.

There are 444 protected areas of Croatia
Protected areas of Croatia
The main protected areas of Croatia are national parks, nature parks and strict reserves. There are 444 protected areas of Croatia, encompassing 9% of the country. Those include 8 national parks in Croatia, 2 strict reserves and 10 nature parks. The most famous protected area and the oldest...

, encompassing 9% of the country. Those include 8 national parks in Croatia, 2 strict reserves and 10 nature park
Nature park
A nature park is a landscape protected by means of long-term planning, use and agriculture. These valuable landscapes are preserved in their present state and promoted for touristic purposes....

s. The most famous protected area and the oldest national park
National park
A national park is a reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or owns. Although individual nations designate their own national parks differently A national park is a reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or...

 in Croatia is the Plitvice Lakes National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
World Heritage Sites in Croatia
-World Heritage Sites:-Tentative List:The following sites are on the Tentative List for Croatia, meaning that the government intends to consider them for nomination in the future:*Zadar - Episcopal complex...

. Velebit Nature Park is a part of the UNESCO Man and the Biosphere Programme. The strict and special reserves, as well as the national and nature parks, are managed and protected by the central government, while other protected areas are managed by counties. In 2005, the National Ecological Network was set up, as the first step in preparation of the EU accession and joining of the Natura 2000
Natura 2000
Natura 2000 is an ecological network of protected areas in the territory of the European Union.-Origins:In May 1992, the governments of the European Communities adopted legislation designed to protect the most seriously threatened habitats and species across Europe. This legislation is called the...

 network.

Politics


Croatia is a unitary democratic parliamentary republic. With the collapse of the ruling communist party in SFR Yugoslavia, Croatia adopted its present constitution in 1990 and organised its first multi-party elections
Multi-party system
A multi-party system is a system in which multiple political parties have the capacity to gain control of government separately or in coalition, e.g.The Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition in the United Kingdom formed in 2010. The effective number of parties in a multi-party system is normally...

. It declared independence
Declaration of independence
A declaration of independence is an assertion of the independence of an aspiring state or states. Such places are usually declared from part or all of the territory of another nation or failed nation, or are breakaway territories from within the larger state...

 on 8 October 1991 leading to the breakup of Yugoslavia and the country was internationally recognised by the United Nations in 1992. Under its 1990 constitution, Croatia operated a semi-presidential system
Semi-presidential system
The semi-presidential system is a system of government in which a president and a prime minister are both active participants in the day-to-day administration of the state...

 until 2000 when it switched to a parliamentary system
Parliamentary system
A parliamentary system is a system of government in which the ministers of the executive branch get their democratic legitimacy from the legislature and are accountable to that body, such that the executive and legislative branches are intertwined....

. Government powers in Croatia are divided into legislative, executive and judiciary powers. The legal system of Croatia is civil law
Civil law (legal system)
Civil law is a legal system inspired by Roman law and whose primary feature is that laws are codified into collections, as compared to common law systems that gives great precedential weight to common law on the principle that it is unfair to treat similar facts differently on different...

, strongly influenced, as is the institutional framework, by the legal heritage of Austria-Hungary. By the time EU accession negotiations
Accession of Croatia to the European Union
Croatia applied for European Union membership in 2003, and the European Commission recommended making it an official candidate in early 2004. Candidate country status was granted to Croatia by the European Council in mid-2004...

 were completed on 30 June 2010, Croatian legislation was fully harmonised with the Community acquis.

The President of the Republic  is the head of state
Head of State
A head of state is the individual that serves as the chief public representative of a monarchy, republic, federation, commonwealth or other kind of state. His or her role generally includes legitimizing the state and exercising the political powers, functions, and duties granted to the head of...

, directly elected to a five-year term and is limited by the Constitution to a maximum of two terms. In addition to being the commander in chief of the armed forces, the president has the procedural duty of appointing the prime minister with the consent of the parliament, and has some influence on foreign policy. The most recent presidential elections were held on 10 January 2010, when Ivo Josipović
Ivo Josipović
Ivo Josipović is a Croatian politician who has been President of Croatia since 2010. Josipović entered politics as a member of the League of Communists of Croatia , and played a key role in the democratic transformation of this party as the author of the first statute of the SDP that replaced the...

 won. He took the oath of office
Oath of office
An oath of office is an oath or affirmation a person takes before undertaking the duties of an office, usually a position in government or within a religious body, although such oaths are sometimes required of officers of other organizations...

 on 18 February 2010.

The government
Government of Croatia
The Government of the Republic of Croatia , commonly abbreviated to Croatian Government , is the main element of the executive branch of government in Croatia. It is led by the President of the Government , commonly abbreviated to premier...

  is headed by the prime minister, who has two deputy prime ministers and 16 ministers in charge of particular sectors of activity. The executive branch
Executive (government)
Executive branch of Government is the part of government that has sole authority and responsibility for the daily administration of the state bureaucracy. The division of power into separate branches of government is central to the idea of the separation of powers.In many countries, the term...

 is responsible for proposing legislation and a budget, executing the laws, and guiding the foreign and internal policies of the republic. Government's official residence
Official residence
An official residence is the residence at which heads of state, heads of government, gubernatorial or other senior figures officially reside...

 is at Banski dvori
Banski dvori
Banski dvori |Courts]] of the Ban) is the name of the historical building on the west side of St. Mark's Square in Zagreb, Croatia. It is the historical official residence of the Croatian Bans, who where the Croatian Viceroys after 1102...

. Since 1 July 2009, the prime minister of the government has been Jadranka Kosor
Jadranka Kosor
Jadranka Kosor is a Croatian politician and former journalist. She is the current Prime Minister of Croatia, having taken office on July 6, 2009, following the sudden resignation of her predecessor Ivo Sanader. She is Croatia's first female Prime Minister since independence.-Early life:Jadranka...

.

The parliament
Parliament of Croatia
The Parliament of Croatia or the Sabor is the unicameral representative body of the citizens of the Republic of Croatia and legislature of the country. Under the terms of the Croatian Constitution, represents the people and is vested with the legislative power...

  is a unicameral legislative body. A second chamber, the House of Counties, set up in 1993 pursuant to the 1990 Constitution, was abolished in 2001. The number of Sabor members can vary from 100 to 160; they are all elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms. The sessions of the Sabor take place from January 15 to July 15, and from September 15 to December 15. The two largest political parties in Croatia are the Croatian Democratic Union
Croatian Democratic Union
The Croatian Democratic Union is the main center-right political party in Croatia. It is the biggest and strongest individual Croatian party since independence of Croatia. The Christian democratic HDZ governed Croatia from 1990 to 2000 and, in partial coalition, from 2003...

 and the Social Democratic Party of Croatia
Social Democratic Party of Croatia
Social Democratic Party of Croatia , commonly referred to in Croatia as simply Social Democratic Party , is the largest centre-left political party in Croatia...

.

Croatia has a three-tiered judicial system, made up of the Supreme Court
Croatian Supreme Court
The Supreme Court of the Republic of Croatia is a highest court and it ensures the uniform application of laws and equal justice to all.-Judicial system:...

, County courts
County Court
A county court is a court based in or with a jurisdiction covering one or more counties, which are administrative divisions within a country, not to be confused with the medieval system of county courts held by the High Sheriff of each county.-England and Wales:County Court matters can be lodged...

, and Municipal courts. The Constitutional Court
Croatian Constitutional Court
Constitutional Court of the Republic of Croatia is the interpreter and guardian of the Croatian Constitution and considered the highest judicial authority de facto, because it can overturn Supreme Court decisions on the basis of constitutional breaches...

 rules on matters regarding the Constitution
Constitution of Croatia
The current Constitution of the Republic of Croatia was adopted by the Parliament of the Republic of Croatia on December 22, 1990. It replaced the Constitution of 1974 ratified in socialist Yugoslavia...

. In addition there are misdemeanour courts, commercial courts and administrative courts. Law enforcement in Croatia is the responsibility of the Croatian police force, which is under the control of the Ministry of the Interior
Ministry of the Interior (Croatia)
The Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Croatia is the ministry in the Government of Croatia which is in charge of state security among other roles...

. In recent years, the force has been undergoing a reform with assistance from international agencies, including the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe
Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe
The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe is the world's largest security-oriented intergovernmental organization. Its mandate includes issues such as arms control, human rights, freedom of the press and fair elections...

 (OSCE) since its mission to Croatia began on 18 April 1996.

Administrative division



Croatia was first subdivided into counties in the Middle Ages
Middle Ages
The Middle Ages is a periodization of European history from the 5th century to the 15th century. The Middle Ages follows the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476 and precedes the Early Modern Era. It is the middle period of a three-period division of Western history: Classic, Medieval and Modern...

. The divisions changed over time to reflect losses of territory to Ottoman conquest and subsequent liberation of the same territory, changes of political status of Dalmatia, Dubrovnik and Istria
Istria
Istria , formerly Histria , is the largest peninsula in the Adriatic Sea. The peninsula is located at the head of the Adriatic between the Gulf of Trieste and the Bay of Kvarner...

. Traditional division of the country into counties was abolished in the 1920s, when the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes and subsequent Kingdom of Yugoslavia introduced oblast
Oblast
Oblast is a type of administrative division in Slavic countries, including some countries of the former Soviet Union. The word "oblast" is a loanword in English, but it is nevertheless often translated as "area", "zone", "province", or "region"...

s and banovinas
Subdivisions of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia
The subdivisions of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia existed successively in three different forms. From 1918 to 1922, the kingdom maintained the pre-World War I subdivisions of Yugoslavia's predecessor states...

 respectively. Communist ruled Croatia, as a constituent part of post-WWII Yugoslavia, abolished earlier divisions and introduced municipalities, subdividing Croatia into approximately one hundred municipalities. Counties were reintroduced in 1992 legislation, significantly altered in terms of territory relative to the pre-1920s subdivisions: In 1918, the Transleithanian part of Croatia was divided into eight counties with their seats in Bjelovar, Gospić, Ogulin, Požega, Vukovar, Varaždin, Osijek and Zagreb, and the 1992 legislation established 15 counties in the same territory.

Since the counties were re-established in 1992, Croatia is divided into 20 counties and the capital city of Zagreb, the latter having the authority and legal status of a county and a city at the same time. Borders of the counties changed in some instances since, with the latest revision taking place in 2006. The counties subdivide into 127 cities and 429 municipalities
Municipalities of Croatia
A Municipality in Croatia is known as an općina . Though equal to Croatian Grads in administrative powers, they are usually more likely to consists of a collection of villages in more rural or suburban area, whereas Grads are more likely to cover urban area...

.
County
Counties of Croatia
The primary territorial subdivisions of the Republic of Croatia called županije . In English they are commonly referred to as counties....

 
Seat Area (km²) Population
Bjelovar-Bilogora
Bjelovar-Bilogora County
Bjelovar-Bilogora County is a county in central Croatia.The central town of Bjelovar was first mentioned in 1413, and it only gained importance when a new fort was built in 1756 to defend against the Ottoman invasions...

 
Bjelovar
Bjelovar
Bjelovar is a city in central Croatia. It is the administrative centre of Bjelovar-Bilogora County. During the 2001 census, there were 41,869 inhabitants, 90.51% which are Croats....

 
2,652 119,743
Brod-Posavina
Brod-Posavina County
Brod-Posavina County is the southern Slavonian county in Croatia. Its center is the city of Slavonski Brod and it spreads along the left bank of the Sava river, hence the name Posavina...

 
Slavonski Brod
Slavonski Brod
Slavonski Brod is a city in Croatia, with a population of 59,507 in 2011. The city was known as Marsonia in the Roman Empire, and as Brod na Savi 1244–1934. It is the sixth largest city in Croatia, after Zagreb, Split, Rijeka, Osijek and Zadar. Located in the region of Slavonia, it is the...

 
2,043 158,559
Dubrovnik-Neretva
Dubrovnik-Neretva County
The Dubrovnik–Neretva County is the southernmost Croatian county located in south Dalmatia. The county seat is Dubrovnik and other large towns are Korčula, Metković, Opuzen and Ploče...

 
Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik is a Croatian city on the Adriatic Sea coast, positioned at the terminal end of the Isthmus of Dubrovnik. It is one of the most prominent tourist destinations on the Adriatic, a seaport and the centre of Dubrovnik-Neretva county. Its total population is 42,641...

 
1,783 122,783
Istria
Istria County
Istria County is the westernmost county of Croatia which includes the biggest part of the Istrian peninsula . The area of the county is called Istra in Croatian and Slovene...

 
Pazin
Pazin
Pazin is the administrative seat of Istria County in Croatia. The town has a population of 4,986 , the total Pazin municipality population is 9,227...

 
2,820 208,440
Karlovac
Karlovac County
Karlovac County is a county in central Croatia, with the administrative center in Karlovac.The city of Karlovac is another fort from the times of the Military Frontier...

 
Karlovac
Karlovac
Karlovac is a city and municipality in central Croatia. The city proper has a population of 49,082, while the municipality has a population of 59,395 inhabitants .Karlovac is the administrative centre of Karlovac County...

 
3,622 128,749
Koprivnica-Križevci
Koprivnica-Križevci County
Koprivnica-Križevci County is a county in northern Croatia. Its hyphenated name comes from two entities: the two of its largest cities, Koprivnica and Križevci....

 
Koprivnica
Koprivnica
Koprivnica is a city in northern Croatia. It is the capital of the Koprivnica-Križevci county. In 2011 the city administrative area had a total population of 30,872, with 23,896 in the city itself.-Population:...

 
1,746 115,582
Krapina-Zagorje
Krapina-Zagorje County
Krapina-Zagorje county is a county in northern Croatia. It encompasses most of the historic region called Hrvatsko Zagorje.The Krapina-Zagorje county is a candidate for being the most idyllic county in Croatia: the many villages and small towns spread out across the hillsides are perfect for...

 
Krapina
Krapina
Krapina is a town in northern Croatia and the administrative centre of Krapina-Zagorje County with a population of 4,482 and a total municipality population of 12,479...

 
1,224 133,064
Lika-Senj
Lika-Senj County
Lika-Senj county is a county in Croatia that includes most of the Lika region and some northern coastline of the Adriatic near the town of Senj, including the northern part of the Pag island...

 
Gospić
Gospic
Gospić is a town in the mountainous and sparsely populated region of Lika, Croatia. It is the administrative centre of Lika-Senj county. Gospić is located near the Lika River in the middle of a karst field....

 
5,350 51,022
Međimurje  Čakovec
Cakovec
Čakovec is a city in northern Croatia, located around 90 kilometres north of Zagreb, the Croatian capital. Čakovec is both the county seat and largest city of Međimurje County, the northernmost, smallest and most densely populated Croatian county.-Population:...

 
730 114,414
Osijek-Baranja
Osijek-Baranja County
Osijek-Baranja county is a county in Croatia, located in northeastern Slavonia and Baranja. Its center is Osijek; other cities include Đakovo, Našice, Valpovo, Belišće, Beli Manastir.-Administrative divisions:Osijek-Baranja county is divided into:...

 
Osijek
Osijek
Osijek is the fourth largest city in Croatia with a population of 83,496 in 2011. It is the largest city and the economic and cultural centre of the eastern Croatian region of Slavonia, as well as the administrative centre of Osijek-Baranja county...

 
4,152 304,899
Požega-Slavonia
Požega-Slavonia County
Požega-Slavonia county is a Croatian county in western Slavonia. Its capital is Požega. Population: 85,831 .-Geography:The Požega-Slavonia county borders on the Bjelovar-Bilogora County in the northwest, Virovitica-Podravina County in the north, Osijek-Baranja County in the northeast,...

 
Požega
Požega, Croatia
Požega is a city in western Slavonia, eastern Croatia, with a total population of 26,403 . It is the administrative center of the Požega-Slavonia County.-Geography:...

 
1,845 78,031
Primorje-Gorski Kotar
Primorje-Gorski Kotar County
Primorje-Gorski kotar County is a county in western Croatia that includes the Bay of Kvarner and the surrounding Northern Croatian seacoast, and the mountainous region of Gorski kotar...

 
Rijeka
Rijeka
Rijeka is the principal seaport and the third largest city in Croatia . It is located on Kvarner Bay, an inlet of the Adriatic Sea and has a population of 128,735 inhabitants...

 
3,582 296,123
Šibenik-Knin
Šibenik-Knin County
Šibenik-Knin County is a county in Croatia, located in north-central Dalmatia. Its center is Šibenik; other notable towns are Knin, Drniš and Skradin....

 
Šibenik
Šibenik
Šibenik is a historic town in Croatia, with population of 51,553 . It is located in central Dalmatia where the river Krka flows into the Adriatic Sea...

 
2,939 109,320
Sisak-Moslavina
Sisak-Moslavina County
Sisak-Moslavina County is a Croatian county in eastern Central Croatia and southwestern Slavonia. It is named after the city of Sisak and the region Moslavina just across the river Sava. According to 2001 census it is inhabited by 185 thousand people....

 
Sisak
Sisak
Sisak is a city in central Croatia. The city's population in 2011 was 33,049, with a total of 49,699 in the administrative region and it is also the administrative centre of the Sisak-Moslavina county...

 
4,463 172,977
Split-Dalmatia
Split-Dalmatia County
Split-Dalmatia County is the central-southern Dalmatian county in Croatia. The administrative center is Split. The population of the county is 455,242...

 
Split  4,534 455,242
Varaždin
Varaždin County
Varaždin County is a county in northern Croatia. It is named after its county seat, the city of Varaždin.-Geography:In addition to the city of Varaždin, the county includes the towns of Ivanec, Ludbreg, Lepoglava, Novi Marof and Varaždinske Toplice, as well as 22 municipalities...

 
Varaždin
Varaždin
Varaždin is a city in north Croatia, north of Zagreb on the highway A4. The total population is 47,055, with 38,746 on of the city settlement itself . The centre of Varaždin county is located near the Drava river, at...

 
1,261 176,046
Virovitica-Podravina
Virovitica-Podravina County
Virovitica-Podravina county is a northern Slavonian county in Croatia. Its county seat is in Virovitica and it includes the area around the Drava river, hence the name Podravina...

 
Virovitica
Virovitica
Virovitica is a Croatian town near the Croatian-Hungarian border. It is situated near the Drava river and belongs to the historic region of Slavonia. Virovitica has a population of 14,663, with 21,327 people in the municipality...

 
2,068 84,586
Vukovar-Syrmia
Vukovar-Syrmia County
Vukovar-Syrmia county is the easternmost Croatian county. It includes the eastern parts of Slavonia and western parts of Syrmia regions; but also the lower Sava river basin ....

 
Vukovar
Vukovar
Vukovar is a city in eastern Croatia, and the biggest river port in Croatia located at the confluence of the Vuka river and the Danube. Vukovar is the center of the Vukovar-Syrmia County...

 
2,448 180,117
Zadar
Zadar County
Zadar County is a county in Croatia, it encompasses northern Dalmatia and southeastern Lika. Its center is the city of Zadar.- Population :According to the 2001 census, Zadar County has population of 162,045...

 
Zadar
Zadar
Zadar is a city in Croatia on the Adriatic Sea. It is the centre of Zadar county and the wider northern Dalmatian region. Population of the city is 75,082 citizens...

 
3,642 170,398
Zagreb County
Zagreb County
Zagreb County is a county in central Croatia. It surrounds – but does not contain – the nation's capital Zagreb, which is a separate territorial unit. For that reason, it is often nicknamed "Zagreb ring"...

 
Zagreb
Zagreb
Zagreb is the capital and the largest city of the Republic of Croatia. It is in the northwest of the country, along the Sava river, at the southern slopes of the Medvednica mountain. Zagreb lies at an elevation of approximately above sea level. According to the last official census, Zagreb's city...

 
3,078 317,642
City of Zagreb  Zagreb
Zagreb
Zagreb is the capital and the largest city of the Republic of Croatia. It is in the northwest of the country, along the Sava river, at the southern slopes of the Medvednica mountain. Zagreb lies at an elevation of approximately above sea level. According to the last official census, Zagreb's city...

 
641 792,875

Foreign relations


Croatia has established diplomatic relations with 174 countries. As of 2009, Croatia maintains a network of 51 embassies, 24 consulates and eight permanent diplomatic missions abroad. Furthermore, there are 52 foreign embassies and 69 consulates
Consul (representative)
The political title Consul is used for the official representatives of the government of one state in the territory of another, normally acting to assist and protect the citizens of the consul's own country, and to facilitate trade and friendship between the peoples of the two countries...

 in the Republic of Croatia in addition to offices of international organizations such as the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development
European Bank for Reconstruction and Development
Founded in 1991, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development uses the tools of investment to help build market economies and democracies in 30 countries from central Europe to central Asia. Its mission was to support the formerly communist countries in the process of establishing their...

, International Organization for Migration
International Organization for Migration
The International Organization for Migration is an intergovernmental organization. It was initially established in 1951 as the Intergovernmental Committee for European Migration to help resettle people displaced by World War II....

, OSCE, World Bank
World Bank
The World Bank is an international financial institution that provides loans to developing countries for capital programmes.The World Bank's official goal is the reduction of poverty...

, World Health Organization
World Health Organization
The World Health Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations that acts as a coordinating authority on international public health. Established on 7 April 1948, with headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, the agency inherited the mandate and resources of its predecessor, the Health...

 (WHO), International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia
International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia
The International Tribunal for the Prosecution of Persons Responsible for Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law Committed in the Territory of the Former Yugoslavia since 1991, more commonly referred to as the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia or ICTY, is a...

 (ICTY), United Nations Development Programme
United Nations Development Programme
The United Nations Development Programme is the United Nations' global development network. It advocates for change and connects countries to knowledge, experience and resources to help people build a better life. UNDP operates in 177 countries, working with nations on their own solutions to...

, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees , also known as The UN Refugee Agency is a United Nations agency mandated to protect and support refugees at the request of a government or the UN itself and assists in their voluntary repatriation, local integration or resettlement to...

 and UNICEF. In 2009, the Croatian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration (Croatia)
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration of the Republic of Croatia is the ministry in the Government of Croatia which is in charge of foreign relations and admission into the European Union.-Foreign affairs ministers:...

 employed 1,381 personnel and expended 648.2 million kuna (86.4 million euro). Stated aims of Croatian foreign policy include enhancing relations with neighbouring countries, developing international cooperation and promotion of the Croatian economy and Croatia itself.

Since 2003, Croatian foreign policy focuses on achieving the strategic goal of becoming a member state of the European Union
Member State of the European Union
A member state of the European Union is a state that is party to treaties of the European Union and has thereby undertaken the privileges and obligations that EU membership entails. Unlike membership of an international organisation, being an EU member state places a country under binding laws in...

 (EU). As of September 2011, Croatia has completed EU accession negotiations and is expected to sign an EU accession treaty by the end of 2011. Croatian EU membership is scheduled starting on 1 July 2013, representing the end of a process started in 2001 by signing of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement
Stabilisation and Association process
In talks with countries who have expressed a wish to join the European Union, the EU typically concludes Association Agreements in exchange for commitments to political, economic, trade, or human rights reform in that country...

 and Croatian application for the EU membership in 2003. A recurring obstacle to the negotiations was Croatia's ICTY cooperation record and Slovenian blockade of the negotiations because of Croatia–Slovenia border disputes. The latter was resolved through an Arbitration Agreement of 4 November 2009, approved by national parliaments and a referendum in Slovenia.

Another strategic Croatian foreign policy goal for the 2000s was NATO membership
Croatia–NATO relations
The accession of Croatia to NATO took place in 2009. Croatia entered into NATO's Partnership for Peace in 2000, which began the process of accession into the alliance. The country received an invitation to join at the 2008 Bucharest Summit and became a full member on April 1,...

. Croatia was included in the Partnership for Peace
Partnership for Peace
Partnership for Peace is a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation program aimed at creating trust between NATO and other states in Europe and the former Soviet Union; 22 States are members...

 in 2000, invited to NATO membership in 2008 and formally joined the alliance on 1 April 2009. Croatia became a member of the United Nations Security Council
United Nations Security Council
The United Nations Security Council is one of the principal organs of the United Nations and is charged with the maintenance of international peace and security. Its powers, outlined in the United Nations Charter, include the establishment of peacekeeping operations, the establishment of...

 for the 2008–2009 term, assuming presidency in December 2008. The country is preparing to join the Schengen Area
Schengen Area
The Schengen Area comprises the territories of twenty-five European countries that have implemented the Schengen Agreement signed in the town of Schengen, Luxembourg, in 1985...

 by 2015.

Military


Croatian Armed Forces
Military of Croatia
Croatian military is officially called Armed Forces of the Republic of Croatia and it consists of three branches:* Croatian Army * Croatian Navy...

 (CAF) consist of the Army, Navy and Air Force branches in addition to the Education and Training Command and Support Command. The CAF is headed by the General Staff, which reports to the Defence Minister
Ministry of Defence (Croatia)
The Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Croatia is the ministry in the Government of Croatia which is in charge of the nation's military. The ministry was established in 1990.-Ministers:-References:...

, who in turn reports to the President of Croatia. According to the constitution, the President is commander-in-chief
Commander-in-Chief
A commander-in-chief is the commander of a nation's military forces or significant element of those forces. In the latter case, the force element may be defined as those forces within a particular region or those forces which are associated by function. As a practical term it refers to the military...

 of the armed forces and in case of immediate threat during wartime he issues orders directly to the General Staff.

Following the 1991–95 war defence spending and CAF size have been in constant decline. As of 2005 military spending was an estimated 2.39% of the country's GDP, which placed Croatia 64th in a ranking of all countries. Since 2005 the budget was kept below 2% of GDP, down from the record high of 11.1% in 1994. Traditionally relying on a large number of conscripts, CAF also went through a period of reforms focused on downsizing, restructuring and professionalisation in the years prior to Croatia's accession to NATO in April 2009. According to a presidential decree issued in 2006 the CAF is set to employ 18,100 active duty military personnel, 3,000 civilians and 2,000 voluntary conscripts between the ages of 18 and 30 in peacetime.

Compulsory conscription was abolished in January 2008. Until 2008 military service was compulsory for men at age 18 and conscripts served six-month tours of duty, reduced in 2001 from the earlier scheme of nine-month conscription tours. Conscientious objectors could instead opt for an eight-month civilian service.

the Croatian military had 120 members stationed in foreign countries as part of United Nations-led international peacekeeping forces, including 95 serving as part of the UNDOF
United Nations Disengagement Observer Force Zone
The United Nations Disengagement Observer Force Zone was established by United Nations Security Council Resolution 350 on 31 May 1974, to implement Resolution 338 which called for an immediate ceasefire and implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 242.The resolution was passed...

 in the Golan Heights. As of 2011 an additional 350 troops serve as part of the NATO-led ISAF
International Security Assistance Force
The International Security Assistance Force is a NATO-led security mission in Afghanistan established by the United Nations Security Council on 20 December 2001 by Resolution 1386 as envisaged by the Bonn Agreement...

 force in Afghanistan and another 20 with the KFOR in Kosovo
Kosovo
Kosovo is a region in southeastern Europe. Part of the Ottoman Empire for more than five centuries, later the Autonomous Province of Kosovo and Metohija within Serbia...

.

Croatia also has a significant military industry sector which exported around US$120 million worth of military equipment and armament in 2010. Croatian-made weapons and vehicles used by CAF include the standard sidearm HS2000 manufactured by HS Produkt
HS Produkt
HS Produkt d.o.o. is a Croatian firearms manufacturing company, best known for design and production of the HS2000 and XDm, a semi-automatic pistol sold in the US market as the Springfield Armory XD.- History :...

 and the M-84D
M-84D
This variant brings the existing M-84 battle tank design, originally Yugoslav, to the Croatian M-84D standard, equipped with a new 1,200 hp engine and new RRAK ERA armour. The M-84D is equipped with a Rafael - Samson Remote Controlled Weapon Station, and a new Omega ballistic computer...

 battle tank designed by the Đuro Đaković factory. Uniforms and helmets worn by CAF soldiers are also locally produced and successfully marketed to other countries.

Economy


(Mil. €) || style="text-align:center;"| Profit
(Mil. €)

|-
| 1 || style="text-align:left;"| Agrokor
Agrokor
Agrokor is the largest privately held company in Croatia. Originally founded in 1976 as a company producing flowers and flower seedlings, it greatly expanded their operations in the following decades by acquiring a number of large companies in Croatia and Southeast Europe. The Agrokor group...

 || style="text-align:left;"| Zagreb
Zagreb
Zagreb is the capital and the largest city of the Republic of Croatia. It is in the northwest of the country, along the Sava river, at the southern slopes of the Medvednica mountain. Zagreb lies at an elevation of approximately above sea level. According to the last official census, Zagreb's city...

 || 3,568 || 22.0
|-
| 2 || style="text-align:left;"| INA || style="text-align:left;"| Zagreb || 3,547 || 137.3
|-
| 3 || style="text-align:left;"| Hrvatska elektroprivreda
Hrvatska elektroprivreda
Hrvatska elektroprivreda is a national power company in Croatia which has been engaged in electricity production, transmission and distribution for more than one century, and with heat supply and gas distribution for the past few decades...

 (HEP) || style="text-align:left;"| Zagreb || 1,677 || 200.3
|-
| 4 || style="text-align:left;"| Konzum
Konzum
Konzum is Croatia's largest supermarket chain with just over 600 stores open in Croatia and has more than 10,000 employees. Its headquarters are in Zagreb. Konzum stores can also be found in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Serbia. Konzum receives over 500,000 customers each day . Konzum also operates a...

 || style="text-align:left;"| Zagreb || 1,574 || 56.6
|-
| 5 || style="text-align:left;"| T-Hrvatski Telekom
T-Hrvatski Telekom
T-Hrvatski Telekom is the national telecommunications company in Croatia.Croatian Telecom was formerly the telephony branch of the state-owned monopoly Hrvatska pošta i telekomunikacije; HPT , which was split into two parts in 1999...

 || style="text-align:left;"| Zagreb || 1,149 || 251.0
|}


Croatia has a high-income market economy. International Monetary Fund
International Monetary Fund
The International Monetary Fund is an organization of 187 countries, working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world...

 data shows that Croatian nominal GDP stood at $69.357 billion, or $15,633 per capita, at the same time in 2008 while purchasing power parity
Purchasing power parity
In economics, purchasing power parity is a condition between countries where an amount of money has the same purchasing power in different countries. The prices of the goods between the countries would only reflect the exchange rates...

 GDP was $82.407 billion or $18,575 per capita. According to Eurostat
Eurostat
Eurostat is a Directorate-General of the European Commission located in Luxembourg. Its main responsibilities are to provide the European Union with statistical information at European level and to promote the integration of statistical methods across the Member States of the European Union,...

 data, Croatian PPS GDP per capita stood at 63.2% of the EU average in 2008. Real GDP growth in 2007 was 6.0 per cent. The average gross salary of a Croatian worker during the first nine months of 2008 was 7,161 kuna (US$ 1,530) per month. In 2007, the International Labour Organization
International Labour Organization
The International Labour Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations that deals with labour issues pertaining to international labour standards. Its headquarters are in Geneva, Switzerland. Its secretariat — the people who are employed by it throughout the world — is known as the...

-defined unemployment
Unemployment
Unemployment , as defined by the International Labour Organization, occurs when people are without jobs and they have actively sought work within the past four weeks...

 rate stood at 9.1%, after falling steadily from 14.7% in 2002. The registered unemployment rate was higher, though, standing at 13.7% in December 2008.

In 2009, economic output was dominated by the service sector which accounted for 73.6% of GDP, followed by the industrial sector with 20.5% and agriculture
Agriculture
Agriculture is the cultivation of animals, plants, fungi and other life forms for food, fiber, and other products used to sustain life. Agriculture was the key implement in the rise of sedentary human civilization, whereby farming of domesticated species created food surpluses that nurtured the...

 accounting for 5.9% of GDP. According to 2004 data, 2.7% of the workforce were employed in agriculture, 32.8% by industry and 64.5% in services. The industrial sector is dominated by shipbuilding, food processing, pharmaceuticals, information technology, biochemical and timber industry. In 2010, Croatian exports were valued at 64.9 billion kuna (8.65 billion euro) with 110.3 billion kuna (14.7 billion euro) worth of imports. The largest trading partner
International trade
International trade is the exchange of capital, goods, and services across international borders or territories. In most countries, such trade represents a significant share of gross domestic product...

 is the European Union
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

.

Privatization
Privatization
Privatization is the incidence or process of transferring ownership of a business, enterprise, agency or public service from the public sector to the private sector or to private non-profit organizations...

 and the drive toward a market economy
Market economy
A market economy is an economy in which the prices of goods and services are determined in a free price system. This is often contrasted with a state-directed or planned economy. Market economies can range from hypothetically pure laissez-faire variants to an assortment of real-world mixed...

 had barely begun under the new Croatian Government when war broke out in 1991. As a result of the war, the economic infrastructure sustained massive damage, particularly the revenue-rich tourism industry. From 1989 to 1993, the GDP fell 40.5%. The Croatian state still controls a significant part of the economy, with government expenditures accounting for as much as 40% of GDP. A backlogged judiciary system, combined with inefficient public administration
Public administration
Public Administration houses the implementation of government policy and an academic discipline that studies this implementation and that prepares civil servants for this work. As a "field of inquiry with a diverse scope" its "fundamental goal.....

, especially on issues of land ownership and corruption, are particular concerns. In 2010 the country has been ranked 62th by Transparency International
Transparency International
Transparency International is a non-governmental organization that monitors and publicizes corporate and political corruption in international development. It publishes an annual Corruption Perceptions Index, a comparative listing of corruption worldwide...

 with a Corruption Perceptions Index
Corruption Perceptions Index
Since 1995, Transparency International publishes the Corruption Perceptions Index annually ranking countries "by their perceived levels of corruption, as determined by expert assessments and opinion surveys." The CPI generally defines corruption as "the misuse of public power for private...

 of 4.1. Another problem is a large and growing national debt, which has reached over 34 billion euro or 89.1% of the nation's GDP.

Tourism


Tourism
Tourism in Croatia
Tourism in Croatia is a well-developed industry. Many tourists visit to experience the country's extensive coastline and well-preserved coastal Renaissance towns...

 dominates the Croatian service sector and accounts for up to 20% of Croatian GDP. Annual tourist industry income for 2011 was estimated at 6.61 billion Euros. Its positive effects are felt throughout the economy of Croatia in terms of increased business volume observed in retail business, processing industry orders and summer seasonal employment. The industry is considered an export business, because it significantly reduces the country's external trade imbalance. Since the conclusion of the Croatian War of Independence, the tourist industry has grown rapidly, recording a fourfold rise in tourist numbers, with more than 10 million tourists each year. The most numerous are tourists from Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

, Slovenia, Austria and the Czech Republic
Czech Republic
The Czech Republic is a landlocked country in Central Europe. The country is bordered by Poland to the northeast, Slovakia to the east, Austria to the south, and Germany to the west and northwest....

 as well as Croatia itself. Length of a tourist stay in Croatia averages 4.9 days.

The bulk of the tourist industry is concentrated along the Adriatic Sea coast. Opatija
Opatija
Opatija is a town in western Croatia, just southwest of Rijeka on the Adriatic coast. , the town proper had a population of 7,850, with the municipality having a total 12,719 inhabitants.-Geography:...

 was the first holiday resort since the middle of the 19th century. By the 1890s, it became one of the most significant European health resorts. Later a large number of resorts sprang up along the coast and numerous islands, offering services ranging from mass tourism to catering and various niche markets, the most significant being nautical tourism
Nautical tourism
Nautical tourism is an increasingly popular way to combine love of sailing and boating with vacation and holiday activities. First defined as an industry segment in Europe and South America, it has since caught on in the United States and the Pacific Rim....

, as there are numerous marinas with more than 16 thousand berths, cultural tourism
Cultural tourism
Cultural tourism is the subset of tourism concerned with a country or region's culture, specifically the lifestyle of the people in those geographical areas, the history of those peoples, their art, architecture, religion, and other elements that helped shape their way of life...

 relying on appeal of medieval coastal cities and numerous cultural events taking place during the summer. Inland areas offer mountain resorts, agrotourism and spa
Spa
The term spa is associated with water treatment which is also known as balneotherapy. Spa towns or spa resorts typically offer various health treatments. The belief in the curative powers of mineral waters goes back to prehistoric times. Such practices have been popular worldwide, but are...

s. Zagreb is also a significant tourist destination, rivaling major coastal cities and resorts. Croatia boasts unpolluted sea nature reflected through numerous nature reserves and 116 Blue Flag beach
Blue Flag beach
The Blue Flag is a certification by the Foundation for Environmental Education that a beach or marina meets its stringent standards.The Blue Flag is a trademark owned by FEE which is a not-for-profit, non-governmental organisation consisting of 65 organisations in 60 member countries in Europe,...

es. Croatia is ranked as the 18th most popular tourist destination in the world.

Infrastructure


The highlight of Croatia's recent infrastructure
Infrastructure
Infrastructure is basic physical and organizational structures needed for the operation of a society or enterprise, or the services and facilities necessary for an economy to function...

 developments is its rapidly developed motorway network, largely built in the late 1990s and especially in the 2000s. By September 2011, Croatia had completed more than 1100 kilometres (683.5 mi) of motorways, connecting Zagreb to most other regions and following various European routes
International E-road network
The international E-road network is a numbering system for roads in Europe developed by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe . The network is numbered from E 1 up and its roads cross national borders...

 and four Pan-European corridors
Pan-European corridors
The ten Pan-European transport corridors were defined at the second Pan-European transport Conference in Crete, March 1994, as routes in Central and Eastern Europe that required major investment over the next ten to fifteen years. Additions were made at the third conference in Helsinki in 1997...

. The busiest motorways are the A1
A1 (Croatia)
The A1 motorway is the longest motorway in Croatia spanning . As it connects Zagreb, the nation's capital, to Split, the second largest city in the country and the largest city in Dalmatia, the motorway represents a major north–south transportation corridor in Croatia and a significant part of the...

, connecting Zagreb to Split and the A3
A3 (Croatia)
The A3 motorway is a major motorway in Croatia spanning . The motorway connects Zagreb, the nation's capital, to the Slavonia region and a number of cities along the Sava River. It represents a major east–west transportation corridor in Croatia and a significant part of the Pan-European Corridor...

, passing east–west through northwest Croatia and Slavonia. A widespread network of state roads in Croatia acts as motorway feeder roads while connecting all major settlements in the country. The high quality and safety levels of the Croatian motorway network were tested and confirmed by several EuroTAP and EuroTest programs.

Croatia has an extensive rail network spanning 2722 kilometres (1,691.4 mi), including 985 kilometres (612.1 mi) of electrified railways and 254 kilometres (157.8 mi) of double track railways. The most significant railways in Croatia are found within the Pan-European transport corridors Vb and X connecting Rijeka to Budapest and Ljubljana to Belgrade, both via Zagreb. All rail services are operated by Croatian Railways
Croatian Railways
Croatian Railways is the national railway company of Croatia. It was formed after the dissolution of Yugoslavia and Yugoslav Railways.Croatia is a member of the International Union of Railways . The UIC Country Code for Croatia is 78.-Railway network:...

.

There are international airport
International airport
An international airport is any airport that can accommodate flights from other countries and are typically equipped with customs and immigration facilities to handle these flights to and from other countries...

s in Zagreb
Zagreb Airport
Zagreb Airport , also known as Pleso Airport after the nearby suburb of Pleso, is the main international airport of Croatia and also a Croatian Air Force and Defense major fighter jet base. Located 10 km from the central railway station in Zagreb, it served 2,071,561 passengers in 2010 and is the...

, Zadar
Zadar Airport
Zadar Airport is the airport serving Zadar, Croatia. It is located in Zemunik Donji 8 km from the Zadar railway station. The airport serves as the flying base for Lufthansa's flight school InterCockpit and Croatian Air Force main training base....

, Split
Split Airport
Split Kaštela/Resnik Airport is the airport serving Split and Kaštela in Split-Dalmatia County, Croatia. It is close to the town of Trogir....

, Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik Airport
-Traffic statistics:Dubrovnik Airport handled 1,270,062 passengers in 2010.In 1987 Dubrovnik Airport handled 1.5 million passengers and 2500 tons of cargo, making 1987 year the busiest thus far...

, Rijeka
Rijeka Airport
Rijeka Airport is the airport serving Rijeka, Croatia. It is located near the town of Omišalj on the island of Krk, 17 km from the Rijeka railway station....

, Osijek
Osijek Airport
Osijek Airport is the airport serving Osijek, Croatia. The airport is located 20 km east southeast of Osijek and is situated near the Osijek - Vukovar regional road, southwest of the eponymous village of Klisa.-Passenger Services:...

 and Pula
Pula Airport
Pula Airport is the airport serving Pula, Croatia, and is located 6 km from the city centre. Thanks to favourable climatic and technical conditions Pula is designated as the alternative airport for parts of Slovenia, Italy, and even Austria...

. As of January 2011, Croatia complies with International Civil Aviation Organization
International Civil Aviation Organization
The International Civil Aviation Organization , pronounced , , is a specialized agency of the United Nations. It codifies the principles and techniques of international air navigation and fosters the planning and development of international air transport to ensure safe and orderly growth...

 aviation safety standards and the Federal Aviation Administration
Federal Aviation Administration
The Federal Aviation Administration is the national aviation authority of the United States. An agency of the United States Department of Transportation, it has authority to regulate and oversee all aspects of civil aviation in the U.S...

 upgraded it to Category 1 rating.
The busiest cargo seaport in Croatia is the Port of Rijeka
Port of Rijeka
The Port of Rijeka is a seaport in Rijeka, Croatia, located on the shore of the Kvarner Gulf in the Adriatic Sea. The first records of the port date to 1281. It was the main port of the Kingdom of Hungary in the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, of Yugoslavia between World War II...

 and the busiest passenger ports are Split
Port of Split
The Port of Split is a seaport in Split, Croatia, located in the Central Dalmatia. A trading post at the site was originally established by Greek settlers from the island of Vis and subsequently taken over by the Romans...

 and Zadar. In addition to those, a large number of minor ports serve an extensive system of ferries connecting numerous islands and coastal cities in addition to ferry lines to several cities in Italy. The largest river port is Vukovar, located on the Danube, representing the nation's outlet to the Pan-European transport corridor VII.

There are 610 kilometres (379 mi) of crude oil pipelines in Croatia, connecting the Port of Rijeka oil terminal with refineries in Rijeka and Sisak, as well as several transhipment terminals. The system has a capacity of 20 million tonnes per year. The natural gas transportation system comprises 2113 kilometres (1,313 mi) of trunk and regional natural gas pipelines, and more than 300 associated structures, connecting production rigs, the Okoli natural gas storage facility, 27 end-users and 37 distribution systems.

Croatian production of energy sources covers 85% of nationwide natural gas demand and 19% of oil demand. In 2008, 47.6% of Croatia's primary energy production structure comprised use of natural gas (47.7%), crude oil (18.0%), fuel wood (8.4%), hydro power (25.4%) and other renewable energy sources (0.5%). In 2009, net total electrical power production in Croatia reached 12,725 GWh and Croatia imported 28.5% of its electric power energy needs. The bulk of Croatian imports are supplied by the Krško Nuclear Power Plant
Krško Nuclear Power Plant
The Krško Nuclear Power Plant is located in Krško, Slovenia. The plant was connected to the power grid on October 2, 1981 and went into commercial operation on January 15, 1983...

, 50% owned by Hrvatska elektroprivreda
Hrvatska elektroprivreda
Hrvatska elektroprivreda is a national power company in Croatia which has been engaged in electricity production, transmission and distribution for more than one century, and with heat supply and gas distribution for the past few decades...

, providing 15% of Croatia's electricity.

Demographics



With its population of 4.29 million in 2011, Croatia ranks 125th by population in the world. Its population density stands at 75.9 inhabitants per square kilometre. The overall life expectancy in Croatia at birth is 75.7 years. The total fertility rate
Total Fertility Rate
The total fertility rate of a population is the average number of children that would be born to a woman over her lifetime if she were to experience the exact current age-specific fertility rates through her lifetime, and she...

 of 1.5 children per mother, is one of the lowest in the world. Since 1991, Croatia's death rate has continuously exceeded its birth rate
Birth rate
Crude birth rate is the nativity or childbirths per 1,000 people per year . Another word used interchangeably with "birth rate" is "natality". When the crude birth rate is subtracted from the crude death rate, it reveals the rate of natural increase...

. Since the late 1990s, there has been a positive net migration into Croatia, reaching a level of more than 7,000 net immigrants in 2006. The Croatian Bureau of Statistics forecast that the population may even shrink to 3.1 million by 2051, depending on actual birth rate and the level of net migration. The population of Croatia rose steadily from 2.1 million in 1857 until 1991, when it peaked at 4.7 million, with exception of censuses taken in 1921 and 1948, i.e. following two world wars. The natural growth rate of the population is currently negative with the demographic transition
Demographic transition
The demographic transition model is the transition from high birth and death rates to low birth and death rates as a country develops from a pre-industrial to an industrialized economic system. The theory is based on an interpretation of demographic history developed in 1929 by the American...

 completed in the 1970s. In recent years, the Croatian government has been pressured each year to add 40% to work permit quotas for foreign workers. In accordance with its immigration policy, Croatia is trying to entice emigrants to return.
The population decrease was also a result of the Croatian War of Independence. During the war, large sections of the population were displaced and emigration increased. In 1991, in predominantly Serb areas, more than 400,000 Croats and other non-Serbs were either removed from their homes by the Croatian Serb forces or fled the violence. During the final days of the war in 1995, more than 120,000 Serbs, and perhaps as many as 200,000, fled the country before arrival of Croatian forces during Operation Storm
Operation Storm
Operation Storm is the code name given to a large-scale military operation carried out by Croatian Armed Forces, in conjunction with the Army of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, to gain back control of parts of Croatia which had been claimed by separatist ethnic Serbs, since early...

. Within a decade following the end of the war, only 117,000 Serb refugees returned out of 300,000 displaced during the entire war. Most of Croatia's remaining Serbs never lived in areas occupied in the Croatian War of Independence. Serbs have been only partially re-settled in the regions they previously inhabited while some of the settlements previously inhabited by Serbs were settled by Croat refugees from Bosnia and Herzegovina, mostly from Republika Srpska
Republika Srpska
Republika Srpska is one of two main political entities of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the other being the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina...

.

Croatia is inhabited mostly by Croats (89.6%), while minority groups include Serbs
Serbs
The Serbs are a South Slavic ethnic group of the Balkans and southern Central Europe. Serbs are located mainly in Serbia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and form a sizable minority in Croatia, the Republic of Macedonia and Slovenia. Likewise, Serbs are an officially recognized minority in...

 (4.5%), Bosniaks
Bosniaks
The Bosniaks or Bosniacs are a South Slavic ethnic group, living mainly in Bosnia and Herzegovina, with a smaller minority also present in other lands of the Balkan Peninsula especially in Serbia, Montenegro and Croatia...

, Hungarians, Italians, Slovenes, Germans
Germans
The Germans are a Germanic ethnic group native to Central Europe. The English term Germans has referred to the German-speaking population of the Holy Roman Empire since the Late Middle Ages....

, Czechs, Romani people and others (5.9%). The main religions of Croatia are Roman Catholicism
Roman Catholic Church
The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the world's largest Christian church, with over a billion members. Led by the Pope, it defines its mission as spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ, administering the sacraments and exercising charity...

 88%, Orthodox Christianity
Eastern Orthodox Church
The Orthodox Church, officially called the Orthodox Catholic Church and commonly referred to as the Eastern Orthodox Church, is the second largest Christian denomination in the world, with an estimated 300 million adherents mainly in the countries of Belarus, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Georgia, Greece,...

 4.4%, other Christianity
Christianity
Christianity is a monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus as presented in canonical gospels and other New Testament writings...

 0.4%, Islam
Islam
Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

 1.3%, other unspecified 0.9%, and none 5.2%.


Languages



Croatian language
Croatian language
Croatian is the collective name for the standard language and dialects spoken by Croats, principally in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Serbian province of Vojvodina and other neighbouring countries...

 is the official language of Croatia, and it is expected to become the 24th official language of the European Union upon its accession in 2013. Minority languages are in official use in local government units where more than a third of population consists of national minorities or where local legislation defines so. Those languages are Czech
Czech language
Czech is a West Slavic language with about 12 million native speakers; it is the majority language in the Czech Republic and spoken by Czechs worldwide. The language was known as Bohemian in English until the late 19th century...

, Hungarian
Hungarian language
Hungarian is a Uralic language, part of the Ugric group. With some 14 million speakers, it is one of the most widely spoken non-Indo-European languages in Europe....

, Italian
Italian language
Italian is a Romance language spoken mainly in Europe: Italy, Switzerland, San Marino, Vatican City, by minorities in Malta, Monaco, Croatia, Slovenia, France, Libya, Eritrea, and Somalia, and by immigrant communities in the Americas and Australia...

, Ruthenian
Ruthenian language
Ruthenian, or Old Ruthenian , is a term used for the varieties of Eastern Slavonic spoken in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and later in the East Slavic territories of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth....

, Serbian
Serbian language
Serbian is a form of Serbo-Croatian, a South Slavic language, spoken by Serbs in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Croatia and neighbouring countries....

 and Slovakian. According to the 2001 Census, 96% of citizens of Croatia declared Croatian as their native language, 1% declared Serbian
Serbian language
Serbian is a form of Serbo-Croatian, a South Slavic language, spoken by Serbs in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Croatia and neighbouring countries....

 as their native language, while no other language is represented in Croatia by more than 0.5% of native speakers among population of Croatia. Croatian is a South Slavic language
South Slavic languages
The South Slavic languages comprise one of three branches of the Slavic languages. There are approximately 30 million speakers, mainly in the Balkans. These are separated geographically from speakers of the other two Slavic branches by a belt of German, Hungarian and Romanian speakers...

. Most Croatian vocabulary is derived from the Slavic branch of the Indo-European language family. Croatian is written using the Latin alphabet. Croatian has three major dialect
Dialect
The term dialect is used in two distinct ways, even by linguists. One usage refers to a variety of a language that is a characteristic of a particular group of the language's speakers. The term is applied most often to regional speech patterns, but a dialect may also be defined by other factors,...

s, with Shtokavian dialect
Shtokavian dialect
Shtokavian or Štokavian is the prestige dialect of the Serbo-Croatian language, and the basis of its Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian, and Montenegrin standards...

 used as the standard Croatian and Chakavian
Chakavian dialect
Chakavian or Čakavian is a dialect of the Croatian language. The name stems from the word for "what?", which is "ča" in Čakavian...

 and Kajkavian
Kajkavian dialect
The Kajkavian dialect is one of the three main dialects of Croatian. It has low mutual intelligibility with the other two dialects, Štokavian and Čakavian. All three are named after their word for "what?", which in Kajkavian is kaj....

 dialects distinguished by their lexicon
Lexicon
In linguistics, the lexicon of a language is its vocabulary, including its words and expressions. A lexicon is also a synonym of the word thesaurus. More formally, it is a language's inventory of lexemes. Coined in English 1603, the word "lexicon" derives from the Greek "λεξικόν" , neut...

, phonology
Phonology
Phonology is, broadly speaking, the subdiscipline of linguistics concerned with the sounds of language. That is, it is the systematic use of sound to encode meaning in any spoken human language, or the field of linguistics studying this use...

, and syntax
Syntax
In linguistics, syntax is the study of the principles and rules for constructing phrases and sentences in natural languages....

.

From 1961 to 1991, the official language was Serbo-Croatian. Even during socialist rule
Socialism
Socialism is an economic system characterized by social ownership of the means of production and cooperative management of the economy; or a political philosophy advocating such a system. "Social ownership" may refer to any one of, or a combination of, the following: cooperative enterprises,...

, Croats often referred to their language as Croato-Serbian (instead of Serbo-Croatian) or as Croatian. Croatian and Serbian variants of the language were not officially recognised as different at the time, but referred to as the west and east version, and had different alphabets: the Latin alphabet
Latin alphabet
The Latin alphabet, also called the Roman alphabet, is the most recognized alphabet used in the world today. It evolved from a western variety of the Greek alphabet called the Cumaean alphabet, which was adopted and modified by the Etruscans who ruled early Rome...

 and Serbian Cyrillic
Cyrillic alphabet
The Cyrillic script or azbuka is an alphabetic writing system developed in the First Bulgarian Empire during the 10th century AD at the Preslav Literary School...

. Croatians are protective of the their Croatian language from foreign influences, as the language was under constant change and threats imposed by previous rulers (i.e. Austrian German, Hungarian, Italian and Turkish words were changed and altered to "Slavic" looking/sounding ones). Efforts made to impose policies to alter Croatian into "Serbo-Croatian" or "South Slavic" language, met resistance from Croats in form of Croatian linguistic purism
Croatian linguistic purism
One of the features of standard Croatian language and in common with several languages such as Czech, Finnish, Slovenian, Tamil or Turkish is word coinage using roots or elements perceived as being characteristic or unique to the speech of the community....

. Croatian replaced Latin as the official language of the Croatian government in the 19th century.

A 2009 survey revealed that 78% of Croatians claim knowledge of at least one foreign language. According to a survey ordered by the European commission
European Commission
The European Commission is the executive body of the European Union. The body is responsible for proposing legislation, implementing decisions, upholding the Union's treaties and the general day-to-day running of the Union....

 in 2005, 49% of Croatians speak English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 as the second language, 34% speak German
German language
German is a West Germanic language, related to and classified alongside English and Dutch. With an estimated 90 – 98 million native speakers, German is one of the world's major languages and is the most widely-spoken first language in the European Union....

, and 14% speak Italian
Italian language
Italian is a Romance language spoken mainly in Europe: Italy, Switzerland, San Marino, Vatican City, by minorities in Malta, Monaco, Croatia, Slovenia, France, Libya, Eritrea, and Somalia, and by immigrant communities in the Americas and Australia...

. French
French language
French is a Romance language spoken as a first language in France, the Romandy region in Switzerland, Wallonia and Brussels in Belgium, Monaco, the regions of Quebec and Acadia in Canada, and by various communities elsewhere. Second-language speakers of French are distributed throughout many parts...

 and Russian
Russian language
Russian is a Slavic language used primarily in Russia, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. It is an unofficial but widely spoken language in Ukraine, Moldova, Latvia, Turkmenistan and Estonia and, to a lesser extent, the other countries that were once constituent republics...

 are spoken by 4% each, and 2% of Croatians speak Spanish
Spanish language
Spanish , also known as Castilian , is a Romance language in the Ibero-Romance group that evolved from several languages and dialects in central-northern Iberia around the 9th century and gradually spread with the expansion of the Kingdom of Castile into central and southern Iberia during the...

. A substantial proportion of Slovenes (59%) have a certain level of knowledge of Croatian language.

Education




Literacy in Croatia stands at 98.1 percent. A worldwide study about the quality of living in different countries published by Newsweek
Newsweek
Newsweek is an American weekly news magazine published in New York City. It is distributed throughout the United States and internationally. It is the second-largest news weekly magazine in the U.S., having trailed Time in circulation and advertising revenue for most of its existence...

in August 2010 ranked the Croatian education system at 22nd, to share the position with Austria. Primary education in Croatia starts at the age of six or seven and consists of eight grades. In 2007 a law was passed to increase free, noncompulsory education until 18 years of age. Compulsory education consists of eight grades of elementary school. Secondary education is provided by gymnasiums
Gymnasium (school)
A gymnasium is a type of school providing secondary education in some parts of Europe, comparable to English grammar schools or sixth form colleges and U.S. college preparatory high schools. The word γυμνάσιον was used in Ancient Greece, meaning a locality for both physical and intellectual...

 and vocational school
Vocational school
A vocational school , providing vocational education, is a school in which students are taught the skills needed to perform a particular job...

s. As of 2010, there are 2,131 elementary schools and 713 schools providing various forms of secondary education. Primary and secondary education are also available in languages of recognised minorities in Croatia, where classes are held in Czech
Czech language
Czech is a West Slavic language with about 12 million native speakers; it is the majority language in the Czech Republic and spoken by Czechs worldwide. The language was known as Bohemian in English until the late 19th century...

, Hungarian
Hungarian language
Hungarian is a Uralic language, part of the Ugric group. With some 14 million speakers, it is one of the most widely spoken non-Indo-European languages in Europe....

, Italian, Serbian and German languages.

There are 84 elementary level and 47 secondary level music
Music school
The term music school refers to an educational institution specialized in the study, training and research of music.Different terms refer to this concept such as school of music, music academy, music faculty, college of music, music department or conservatory.Music instruction can be provided...

 and art schools, as well as 92 schools for disabled children and youth and 74 schools for adults. Nationwide leaving exams
Matura
Matura or a similar term is the common name for the high-school leaving exam or "maturity exam" in various countries, including Albania, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Kosovo, Liechtenstein, Macedonia, Montenegro, Poland, Serbia,...

  were introduced for secondary education students in the school year 2009–2010. It comprises three compulsory subjects (Croatian language, mathematics
Mathematics
Mathematics is the study of quantity, space, structure, and change. Mathematicians seek out patterns and formulate new conjectures. Mathematicians resolve the truth or falsity of conjectures by mathematical proofs, which are arguments sufficient to convince other mathematicians of their validity...

, and a foreign language) and optional subjects and is a prerequisite for university education.


Croatia has eight universities, the University of Zagreb
University of Zagreb
The University of Zagreb is the biggest Croatian university and the oldest continuously operating university in the area covering Central Europe south of Vienna and all of Southeastern Europe...

, University of Split
University of Split
The University of Split is a university located in Split, Croatia. It was founded in 1974. and is organized in 13 faculties and 124 faculty programmes...

, University of Rijeka
University of Rijeka
The University of Rijeka is situated in the city of Rijeka with faculties also located in cities throughout the regions of Primorje, Istria and Lika....

, University of Osijek
University of Osijek
The Josip Juraj Strossmayer University of Osijek is a university located in Osijek, Croatia. It was founded in 1975 and is organized in 11 faculties.-History:...

, University of Zadar
University of Zadar
The University of Zadar is a university located in Zadar, Croatia. It was founded in 2002.- University Departments :The University of Zadar is entirely integrated university, consisting at present of over 20 departments:...

, University of Dubrovnik
University of Dubrovnik
The University of Dubrovnik is a university located in Dubrovnik, Croatia. It was founded in 2003 and is organized in 7 Departments.-History:...

, University of Pula
University of Pula
The Juraj Dobrila University of Pula is a university located in Pula, Croatia. It was founded in 2006 and is organized in 5 Departments.-History:...

 and Dubrovnik International University
Dubrovnik International University
Dubrovnik International University is a private university established in 2008 under the auspices of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations and in conjunction with both Croatian and American institutions. It is located within the Dominican Monastery in Dubrovnik, Croatia and is the first...

.
The University of Zadar, the first university in Croatia, was founded in 1396 and remained active until 1807, when other institutions of higher education took over until the foundation of the renewed University of Zadar in 2002. The University of Zagreb, founded in 1669, is the oldest continuously operating university in Southeast Europe. There are also 11 polytechnics
Institute of technology
Institute of technology is a designation employed in a wide range of learning institutions awarding different types of degrees and operating often at variable levels of the educational system...

 and 23 higher education
Higher education
Higher, post-secondary, tertiary, or third level education refers to the stage of learning that occurs at universities, academies, colleges, seminaries, and institutes of technology...

 institutions, of which 19 are private. In total, there are 132 institutions of higher education in Croatia, attended by more than 145 thousand students.

There are 205 companies, government or education system institutions and non-profit organizations in Croatia pursuing scientific research and development of technology. Combined, they spent more than 3 billion kuna (400 million euro) and employed 10,191 full-time research staff in 2008. Among the scientific institutes operating in Croatia, the largest is the Ruđer Bošković Institute in Zagreb. The Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts
Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts
The Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts is the national academy of Croatia. It was founded in 1866 as the Yugoslav Academy of Sciences and Arts , and was known by that name for most of its existence.- History :...

 in Zagreb is a learned society
Learned society
A learned society is an organization that exists to promote an academic discipline/profession, as well a group of disciplines. Membership may be open to all, may require possession of some qualification, or may be an honor conferred by election, as is the case with the oldest learned societies,...

 promoting language, culture, arts and science from its inception in 1866. Croatia has also produced inventors and Nobel Prize
Nobel Prize
The Nobel Prizes are annual international awards bestowed by Scandinavian committees in recognition of cultural and scientific advances. The will of the Swedish chemist Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite, established the prizes in 1895...

 winners.

Health


Croatia has a universal health care
Universal health care
Universal health care is a term referring to organized health care systems built around the principle of universal coverage for all members of society, combining mechanisms for health financing and service provision.-History:...

 system, whose roots can be traced back to the Hungarian-Croatian Parliament Act of 1891, providing a form of mandatory insurance of all factory workers and craftsmen. The population is covered by a basic health insurance plan provided by statute and optional insurance. In 2009, annual healthcare related expenditures reached 20.6 billion kuna (2.75 billion euro). Healthcare expenditures comprise only 0.6% of private health insurance and public spending. In 2010, Croatia spent 6.9% of its GDP on healthcare. Croatia ranked around the 50th in the world in life expectancy with 73 years for men and 79 years for women, and it had a low infant mortality rate of 6 per 1,000 live births.

There are hundreds of healthcare institutions in Croatia, including 79 hospitals and clinics with 23,967 beds. The hospitals and clinics care for more than 700 thousand patients per year and employ 5,205 medical doctors
Doctor of Medicine
Doctor of Medicine is a doctoral degree for physicians. The degree is granted by medical schools...

, including 3,929 specialists. There are 6,379 private practice offices, and a total of 41,271 health workers in the country. There are 63 emergency medical service units, responding to more than a million calls. The principal cause of death in 2008 was cardiovascular disease at 43.5% for men and 57.2% for women, followed by tumours, at 29.4% for men and 21.4% for women. In 2009 only 13 Croatians had been infected with HIV/AIDS and 6 had died from the disease. In 2008 it was estimated by the WHO that 27.4% of Croatians over age of 15 are smokers. According to 2003 WHO data, 22% of the Croatian adult population is obese.

Culture


Because of its geographic position, Croatia represents a blend of four different cultural spheres. It has been a crossroad of influences of the western culture and the east—ever since division of the Western Roman Empire
Western Roman Empire
The Western Roman Empire was the western half of the Roman Empire after its division by Diocletian in 285; the other half of the Roman Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire, commonly referred to today as the Byzantine Empire....

 and the Byzantine Empire
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

—as well as of the Mitteleuropa
Mitteleuropa
Mitteleuropa is the German term equal to Central Europe. The word has political, geographic and cultural meaning. While it describes a geographical location, it also is the word denoting a political concept of a German-dominated and exploited Central European union that was put into motion during...

 and the Mediterranean culture. The Illyrian movement
Illyrian movement
The Illyrian movement , also Croatian national revival , was a cultural and political campaign with roots in the early modern period, and revived by a group of young Croatian intellectuals during the first half of 19th century, around the years of 1835–1849...

 was the most significant period of national cultural history, as the 19th century period proved crucial in emancipation of the Croatian language and saw unprecedented developments in all fields of art and culture, giving rise to a number of historical figures. The Ministry of Culture
Ministry of Culture (Croatia)
The Ministry of Culture is a ministry of the Croatian government, whose work is aimed at preserving the cultural and natural heritage and overseeing its development...

 of the Republic of Croatia is tasked with preserving the nation's cultural and natural heritage
Natural and Cultural Heritage of Croatia
The Natural and Cultural Heritage of Croatia comprises sites, monuments, goods and species of particular importance to the Republic of Croatia which are protected by national law...

 and overseeing its development. Further activities supporting development of culture are undertaken at local government level. The UNESCO
UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

 inscribed seven sites in Croatia
World Heritage Sites in Croatia
-World Heritage Sites:-Tentative List:The following sites are on the Tentative List for Croatia, meaning that the government intends to consider them for nomination in the future:*Zadar - Episcopal complex...

 on the World Heritage List. The country is also rich with Intangible culture and holds ten of UNESCO's World's intangible culture masterpieces
Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity
The Lists of Intangible Cultural Heritage are established by UNESCO aiming to ensure the better protection of important intangible cultural heritages worldwide and the awareness of their significance...

, surpassing all countries in Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

 except Spain
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 which possesses an equal number of the listed items. A global cultural contribution from Croatia is the necktie
Necktie
A necktie is a long piece of cloth worn for decorative purposes around the neck or shoulders, resting under the shirt collar and knotted at the throat. Variants include the ascot tie, bow tie, bolo tie, and the clip-on tie. The modern necktie, ascot, and bow tie are descended from the cravat. Neck...

, derived from the cravat
Cravat
The cravat is a neckband, the forerunner of the modern tailored necktie and bow tie, originating from 17th-century Croatia.From the end of the 16th century, the term band applied to any long-strip neckcloth that was not a ruff...

 originally worn by the 17th century Croatian mercenaries in France.
As of 2009, Croatia has 23 professional theatres, 14 professional children's theatres and 27 amateur theatres visited by more than two million viewers per year. The professional theatres employ 1,100 artists. There are 24 professional orchestras, ensembles and choirs in the country, attracting an annual attendance of 323 thousand. There are 117 cinemas with attendance exceeding 3.5 million. Croatia has 175 museums, visited by nearly 2.2 million people in 2009. Furthermore, there are 1,685 libraries in the country, containing more than 23.5 million volumes, and 15 archives.

In 2009, more than 7,200 books and brochures were published, along with 2,678 magazines and 314 newspapers. There are also 146 radio stations and 21 TV stations operating in the country. In past five years, film production in Croatia produced up to five feature films and 10 to 51 short films, with an additional 76 to 112 TV films. As of 2009, there are 784 amateur cultural and artistic associations and more than 10 thousand cultural, educational and artistic events held annually. The book publishing market is dominated by several major publishers and the industry's centrepiece event—Interliber exhibition held annually at Zagreb Fair.

Croatia has established a high level of human development and gender equality
Gender equality
Gender equality is the goal of the equality of the genders, stemming from a belief in the injustice of myriad forms of gender inequality.- Concept :...

 in terms of the Human Development Index
Human Development Index
The Human Development Index is a composite statistic used to rank countries by level of "human development" and separate "very high human development", "high human development", "medium human development", and "low human development" countries...

. It promotes disability rights
Disability rights movement
The disability rights movement is the movement to secure equal opportunities and equal rights for people with disabilities. The specific goals and demands of the movement are: accessibility and safety in transportation, architecture, and the physical environment, equal opportunities in independent...

, and is legally tolerant towards homosexuals. LGBT civil union
Civil union
A civil union, also referred to as a civil partnership, is a legally recognized form of partnership similar to marriage. Beginning with Denmark in 1989, civil unions under one name or another have been established by law in many developed countries in order to provide same-sex couples rights,...

s have been permitted since 2003, however legal regulation of the area is considered by LGBT activists in the country as inadequate. Immigration to Croatia is generally viewed as necessary and beneficial to its economic development, and is expected to rise following EU accession of Croatia.

Arts and literature


Architecture in Croatia reflects influences of bordering nations. Austrian and Hungarian influence is visible in public spaces and buildings in the north and in the central regions, architecture found along coasts of Dalmatia and Istria exhibits Venetian influence. Large squares named after culture heroes, well-groomed parks, and pedestrian-only zones, are features of these orderly towns and cities, especially where large scale Baroque
Baroque architecture
Baroque architecture is a term used to describe the building style of the Baroque era, begun in late sixteenth century Italy, that took the Roman vocabulary of Renaissance architecture and used it in a new rhetorical and theatrical fashion, often to express the triumph of the Catholic Church and...

 urban planning took place, for instance in Varaždin and Karlovac. Subsequent influence of the Art Nouveau
Art Nouveau
Art Nouveau is an international philosophy and style of art, architecture and applied art—especially the decorative arts—that were most popular during 1890–1910. The name "Art Nouveau" is French for "new art"...

 was reflected in contemporary architecture. Along the coast, the architecture is Mediterranean with a strong Venetian and Renaissance influence in major urban areas exemplified in works of Juraj Dalmatinac and Niccolò Fiorentino such as the Cathedral of St. James
Cathedral of St. James
-Canada:* Cathedral Church of St. James * Saint-Jacques Cathedral , mostly demolished* Mary, Queen of the World Cathedral in Montreal, originally known as Saint James Cathedral-Puerto Rico:...

 in Šibenik.
The oldest preserved examples of Croatian architecture are the 9th century churches, with the largest and the most representative among them being Donatus of Zadar.

Besides the architecture encompassing the oldest artworks in Croatia, there is a long history of artists in Croatia reaching to the Middle Ages. In that period the stone portal of the Trogir Cathedral was made by Radovan, representing the most important monument of Romanesque
Romanesque art
Romanesque art refers to the art of Western Europe from approximately 1000 AD to the rise of the Gothic style in the 13th century, or later, depending on region. The preceding period is increasingly known as the Pre-Romanesque...

 sculpture in the Balkans. The Renaissance
Renaissance in Croatia
The Renaissance in Croatia is a period of cultural enrichment in Croatia that began at the end of the 15th century and lasted until the second quarter of the 16th century.- Introduction :...

 had the greatest impact on the Adriatic Sea coast since the remainder of Croatia was embroiled in the Hundred Years' Croatian–Ottoman War
Hundred Years' Croatian–Ottoman War
The Hundred Years' Croatian–Ottoman War is the name for a sequence of conflicts, mostly of relatively low-intensity, between the Kingdom of Croatia, which in that period was ruled by a succession of dynasties and Ottoman Empires.- Time span :There are several different variations about the exact...

. With the waning of the Ottoman Empire, art flourished during the Baroque
Baroque
The Baroque is a period and the style that used exaggerated motion and clear, easily interpreted detail to produce drama, tension, exuberance, and grandeur in sculpture, painting, literature, dance, and music...

 and Rococo
Rococo
Rococo , also referred to as "Late Baroque", is an 18th-century style which developed as Baroque artists gave up their symmetry and became increasingly ornate, florid, and playful...

. The nineteenth and the twentieth centuries brought about affirmation of numerous Croatian artisans, helped by several patrons of the arts such as bishop Josip Juraj Strossmayer
Josip Juraj Strossmayer
Josip Juraj Strossmayer was a Croatian politician, Roman Catholic bishop and benefactor.-Early life and rise as a cleric:...

. Croatian artists of the period achieving worldwide renown were Vlaho Bukovac
Vlaho Bukovac
Vlaho Bukovac was a Croatian painter.-Life:- Early life :Bukovac was born Biagio Faggioni in the town of Cavtat south of Dubrovnik in Dalmatia...

 and Ivan Meštrović
Ivan Meštrovic
Ivan Meštrović was a Croatian and Yugoslav sculptor and architect born in Vrpolje, Croatia...

.

The Baška tablet
Baška tablet
Baška tablet is one of the first monuments containing an inscription in the Croatian language, dating from the year 1100.The tablet was discovered by scholars in 1851 in the paving of the Romanesque church of St. Lucy in Jurandvor, near Baška, on the island of Krk...

, a stone inscribed with the glagolitic alphabet
Glagolitic alphabet
The Glagolitic alphabet , also known as Glagolitsa, is the oldest known Slavic alphabet. The name was not coined until many centuries after its creation, and comes from the Old Slavic glagolъ "utterance" . The verb glagoliti means "to speak"...

 found on the Krk
Krk
Krk is a Croatian island in the northern Adriatic Sea, located near Rijeka in the Bay of Kvarner and part of the Primorje-Gorski Kotar county....

 island and dated to 1100, is considered to be the oldest surviving prose in Croatian. The beginning of more vigorous development of Croatian literature is marked by the Renaissance and Marko Marulić
Marko Marulic
Marko Marulić |Split]], 18 August 1450 – Split, 5 January 1524) was a Croatian national poet and Christian humanist, known as the Crown of the Croatian Medieval Age and the father of the Croatian Renaissance. He signed his works as Marko Marulić Splićanin , Marko Pečenić, Marcus Marulus ...

. Besides Marulić, Renaissance playwright Marin Držić
Marin Držic
Marin Držić is considered the finest Croatian Renaissance playwright and prose writer.- Life :Born into a large and well to do family in Dubrovnik, Držić was trained and ordained as a priest — a calling very unsuitable for his rebel temperament...

, Baroque poet Ivan Gundulić
Ivan Gundulic
Ivan Franov Gundulić is the most celebrated Croatian Baroque poet from the Republic of Ragusa. His work embodies central characteristics of Roman Catholic Counter-Reformation: religious fervor, insistence on "vanity of this world" and zeal in opposition to "infidels." Gundulić's major...

, Croatian national revival poet Ivan Mažuranić
Ivan Mažuranic
Ivan Mažuranić was a Croatian poet, linguist and politician—probably the most important figure in Croatia's cultural life in the mid-19th century...

, novelist, playwright and poet August Šenoa
August Šenoa
August Šenoa was a Croatian novelist, critic, editor, poet, and dramatist....

, poet and writer Antun Gustav Matoš
Antun Gustav Matoš
Antun Gustav Matoš was a Croatian poet, short story writer, journalist, essayist and travelogue writer. He is considered the champion of Croatian modernist literature, opening Croatia to the currents of European modernism, and one of the greatest Croatian literary figures of all time.-Life:Matoš...

, poet Antun Branko Šimić
Antun Branko Šimic
Antun Branko Šimić was a Herzegovinian Croat expressionist poet.-Life:He was born in Drinovci near Grude on November 18, 1898, in the family of Vida and Martin Šimić. He attended primary school in his native village, and then the first three forms of the Franciscan classical grammar school in...

, expressionist
Expressionism
Expressionism was a modernist movement, initially in poetry and painting, originating in Germany at the beginning of the 20th century. Its typical trait is to present the world solely from a subjective perspective, distorting it radically for emotional effect in order to evoke moods or ideas...

 and realist
Realism
Realism, Realist or Realistic are terms that describe any manifestation of philosophical realism, the belief that reality exists independently of observers, whether in philosophy itself or in the applied arts and sciences. In this broad sense it is frequently contrasted with Idealism.Realism in the...

 writer Miroslav Krleža
Miroslav Krleža
Miroslav Krleža was a leading Croatian and Yugoslav writer and the dominant figure in cultural life of both Yugoslav states, the Kingdom and the Republic . He has often been proclaimed the greatest Croatian writer of the 20th century.-Biography:Miroslav Krleža was born in Zagreb, modern-day...

, poet Tin Ujević
Tin Ujevic
Augustin "Tin" Ujević is considered to be one of the greatest Croatian poets of all times.Ujević was born in Vrgorac, a small town in the Dalmatian hinterland, and grew up in what were then the provincial towns of Imotski and Makarska. He completed classical gymnasium in Split...

 and novelist and short story writer Ivo Andrić
Ivo Andric
Ivan "Ivo" Andrić was a Yugoslav novelist, short story writer, and the 1961 winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature. His writings dealt mainly with life in his native Bosnia under the Ottoman Empire...

 are often cited as the greatest figures in Croatian literature.

Media




The freedom of the press and the freedom of speech are guaranteed by the constitution of Croatia
Constitution of Croatia
The current Constitution of the Republic of Croatia was adopted by the Parliament of the Republic of Croatia on December 22, 1990. It replaced the Constitution of 1974 ratified in socialist Yugoslavia...

. Croatia ranked 62nd in the 2010 Press Freedom Index
Press Freedom Index
The Press Freedom Index is an annual ranking of countries compiled and published by Reporters Without Borders based upon the organization's assessment of their press freedom records. Small countries, such as Andorra, are excluded from this report...

 report compiled by Reporters Without Borders
Reporters Without Borders
Reporters Without Borders is a France-based international non-governmental organization that advocates freedom of the press. It was founded in 1985, by Robert Ménard, Rony Brauman and the journalist Jean-Claude Guillebaud. Jean-François Julliard has served as Secretary General since 2008...

. The state-owned news agency HINA
Hina
Hina is the name of several different goddesses and women in Polynesian mythology. In some traditions, the trickster and culture hero Maui has a wife named Hina, as do the gods Tane and Tangaroa. Hina is often associated with the moon....

 runs a wire service
Wire Service
Wire Service is an American drama series that aired on ABC as part of its 1956-57 season lineup.-Synopsis:Wire Service focuses on three reporters for the fictional Trans-Globe wire service, which was similar to real-life news wire services such as the Associated Press and United Press International...

 in Croatian and English on politics, economics, society and culture.

Nevertheless, despite the provisions fixed in the constitution, freedoms of press ans speech in Croatia have been classified as partly free since 2000 by Freedom House
Freedom House
Freedom House is an international non-governmental organization based in Washington, D.C. that conducts research and advocacy on democracy, political freedom and human rights...

, the independent nongovernmental organization that monitors press freedom worldwide.
Namely the country has been ranked 86th (on 196th countries), with no improvement during the last 5 years.

As of October 2011, there are nine nationwide free-to-air
Free-to-air
Free-to-air describes television and radio services broadcast in clear form, allowing any person with the appropriate receiving equipment to receive the signal and view or listen to the content without requiring a subscription or one-off fee...

 DVB-T
DVB-T
DVB-T is an abbreviation for Digital Video Broadcasting — Terrestrial; it is the DVB European-based consortium standard for the broadcast transmission of digital terrestrial television that was first published in 1997 and first broadcast in the UK in 1998...

 television channels, with Croatian Radiotelevision
Croatian Radiotelevision
Croatian Radiotelevision is a Croatian public broadcasting company. It operates several radio and television channels, over a domestic transmitter network as well as satellite...

 (HRT), Nova TV and RTL Televizija
RTL Televizija
RTL Televizija is a Croatian commercial broadcaster with national availability that has been broadcasting since April 30, 2004.RTL Televizija is 74% owned by the RTL Group....

 operating two of the channels each, and the remaining three operated by the Croatian Olympic Committee
Croatian Olympic Committee
The Croatian Olympic Committee is the non-profit organization representing Croatian athletes in the International Olympic Committee. The COC organizes Croatia's representatives at the Summer and Winter Olympic Games. It also organizes the Croatian contingent at smaller events such as the...

, Kapital Net d.o.o. and Author d.o.o. companies. In addition there are 21 regional or local DVB-T television channels. The HRT is also broadcasting a satellite TV channel. In 2009, there were 146 radio stations and 21 TV stations in Croatia. Cable television
Cable television
Cable television is a system of providing television programs to consumers via radio frequency signals transmitted to televisions through coaxial cables or digital light pulses through fixed optical fibers located on the subscriber's property, much like the over-the-air method used in traditional...

 and IPTV
IPTV
Internet Protocol television is a system through which television services are delivered using the Internet protocol suite over a packet-switched network such as the Internet, instead of being delivered through traditional terrestrial, satellite signal, and cable television formats.IPTV services...

 networks are gaining ground in the country, as the cable TV networks already serve 450 thousand people, 10% of the total population of the country.

There are 314 newspapers and 2,678 magazines published in Croatia. The print media market is dominated by Europapress Holding
Europapress holding
Europapress Holding is the leading media company in Croatia and Southeast Europe, with 5 daily newspapers and more than 30 magazines. According to Media Market Monitor, it is the largest and fastest growing private media company in Southeast Europe...

 and Styria Media Group who publish their flagship dailies Jutarnji list
Jutarnji list
Jutarnji list is a daily newspaper in Croatia with a circulation of about 115,000 copies.It was launched in April 1998, becoming the first successful Croatian daily newspaper to appear since the 1950s. It was named after a Zagreb daily that used to circulate before WW2...

, Večernji list
Vecernji list
Večernji list is a Croatian daily newspaper published in Zagreb.The newspaper was started in the 1950s and it is today one of two largest daily newspapers in Croatia...

and 24sata. Other influential newspapers are Novi list
Novi list
Novi list is the oldest Croatian daily newspaper published in Rijeka. It is most read in Primorje-Gorski Kotar County of Croatia....

, Slobodna Dalmacija
Slobodna Dalmacija
Slobodna Dalmacija is a Croatian daily newspaper published in Split.The first issue of Slobodna Dalmacija was published on June 17, 1943 by Tito's Partisans in a cave on Mosor, a mountain near Split, which was occupied by the Italian army during that time. The paper was later published in various...

and state-owned Vjesnik
Vjesnik
Vjesnik is a Croatian daily newspaper, published in Zagreb. Through its history, it has been considered a newspaper of record.The paper was originally printed as a monthly publication by the League of Communists of Croatia starting in 1940...

. According to a 2006 survey, Jutarnji list is the most widely circulated daily newspaper, followed by Večernji list and 24sata.

Croatia's film industry
Cinema of Croatia
The cinema of Croatia has a somewhat shorter tradition than what is common for other Central European countries: the serious beginning of Croatian cinema starts with the rise of the Yugoslavian film industry in the 1940s...

 is small and heavily subsidized by the government, mainly through grants approved by the Ministry of Culture with films often being co-produced by HRT. Pula Film Festival
Pula Film Festival
The Pula Film Festival is the oldest Croatian film festival which is held annually in a Roman amphitheater known as the Pula arena since 1954. The festival is usually held in the summer, in July or August....

, the national film awards event held annually in Pula
Pula
Pula is the largest city in Istria County, Croatia, situated at the southern tip of the Istria peninsula, with a population of 62,080 .Like the rest of the region, it is known for its mild climate, smooth sea, and unspoiled nature. The city has a long tradition of winemaking, fishing,...

, is the most prestigious film event featuring national and international productions. The greatest accomplishment by Croatian filmmakers was achieved by Dušan Vukotić
Dušan Vukotic
Dušan Vukotić was an award-winning cartoonist, author and director of animated films from Yugoslavia. He is the best known member of the Zagreb school of animated films....

 when he won the 1961 Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film for Ersatz .

Cuisine


Croatian traditional cuisine varies from one region to another. The coastal regions draw upon culinary influences of Greek, Roman and other Mediterranean cuisines which prominently feature various seafood, cooked vegetables and pasta, as well as condiments such as olive oil and garlic. The continental cuisine is heavily influenced by Hungarian, Austrian and Turkish
Turkish cuisine
Turkish cuisine is largely the heritage of Ottoman cuisine, which can be described as a fusion and refinement of Central Asian, Middle Eastern and Balkan cuisines. Turkish cuisine has in turn influenced those and other neighbouring cuisines, including that of western Europe...

 culinary styles. In that area, meats, freshwater fish and vegetable dishes are predominant.

There are two distinct wine-producing regions in Croatia. The continental region in the north-east of the country, especially Slavonia is capable of producing premium wines, particularly whites. Along the north coast, Istrian and Krk wines are similar to those produced in neighbouring Italy, while further south in Dalmatia, Mediterranean-style red wines are the norm. Annual production of wine exceeds 140 million litres. Although beer arrived in the country relatively late in the 18th century, the annual consumption per capita was 83.3 litres in 2008 which placed Croatia 15th among the world's countries.

Sports


There is more than 400 thousand active sportspeople in Croatia. Out of that number, 277 thousand Croatians are members of sports associations and nearly four thousand are members of chess and contract bridge
Contract bridge
Contract bridge, usually known simply as bridge, is a trick-taking card game using a standard deck of 52 playing cards played by four players in two competing partnerships with partners sitting opposite each other around a small table...

 associations. Association football is the most popular sport. The Croatian Football Federation
Croatian Football Federation
The Croatian Football Federation is the governing body of association football in Croatia. It was originally formed in 1912 and is based in the capital city of Zagreb. The organisation is a member of both FIFA and UEFA, and is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the game of football in Croatia...

 , with more than 118 thousand registered players, is the largest sporting association in the country. The Prva HNL football league attracts the second highest average attendance of any professional sports league in the country. In season 2010/2011, it attracted 458,746 spectators.

Croatian athletes competing at international events since Croatian independence in 1991 won 27 Olympic medals
Croatia at the Olympics
Croatia competed at the Olympic Games for the first time as an independent nation in 1992, and has participated in every Games since then...

, including seven gold medals at the 1996 Summer Olympics
1996 Summer Olympics
The 1996 Summer Olympics of Atlanta, officially known as the Games of the XXVI Olympiad and unofficially known as the Centennial Olympics, was an international multi-sport event which was celebrated in 1996 in Atlanta, Georgia, United States....

 and the 2004 Summer Olympics
2004 Summer Olympics
The 2004 Summer Olympic Games, officially known as the Games of the XXVIII Olympiad, was a premier international multi-sport event held in Athens, Greece from August 13 to August 29, 2004 with the motto Welcome Home. 10,625 athletes competed, some 600 more than expected, accompanied by 5,501 team...

 in handball, at the 2000 Summer Olympics
2000 Summer Olympics
The Sydney 2000 Summer Olympic Games or the Millennium Games/Games of the New Millennium, officially known as the Games of the XXVII Olympiad, were an international multi-sport event which was celebrated between 15 September and 1 October 2000 in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia...

 in weightlifting and four gold medals in alpine skiing
Alpine skiing
Alpine skiing is the sport of sliding down snow-covered hills on skis with fixed-heel bindings. Alpine skiing can be contrasted with skiing using free-heel bindings: Ski mountaineering and nordic skiing – such as cross-country; ski jumping; and Telemark. In competitive alpine skiing races four...

 at the 2002 Winter Olympics
2002 Winter Olympics
The 2002 Winter Olympics, officially the XIX Olympic Winter Games, were a winter multi-sport event that was celebrated in February 2002 in and around Salt Lake City, Utah, United States. Approximately 2,400 athletes from 77 nations participated in 78 events in fifteen disciplines, held throughout...

 and the 2006 Winter Olympics
2006 Winter Olympics
The 2006 Winter Olympics, officially known as the XX Olympic Winter Games, was a winter multi-sport event which was celebrated in Turin, Italy from February 10, 2006, through February 26, 2006. This marked the second time Italy hosted the Olympic Winter Games, the first being the VII Olympic Winter...

. In addition, Croatian athletes won 13 gold medals at world championships, including two in athletics at the World Championships in Athletics held in 2007
2007 World Championships in Athletics
The 11th World Championships in Athletics, under the auspices of the International Association of Athletics Federations , were held at Nagai Stadium in Osaka, Japan from 24 August to 2 September 2007...

 and 2009
2009 World Championships in Athletics
The 12th IAAF World Championships in Athletics were held in Berlin, Germany from 15–23 August 2009. The majority of events took place in the Olympiastadion, while the marathon and racewalking events started and finished at the Brandenburg Gate....

, one in handball at the 2003 World Men's Handball Championship
2003 World Men's Handball Championship
The 2003 World Men's Handball Championship took place in Portugal from January 20 to February 2, 2003.-Qualified teams:24 teams were qualified for the first round and dispatched into 4 groups.Group A : , , , , , .Group B : , , , , , ....

, one in water polo
Water polo
Water polo is a team water sport. The playing team consists of six field players and one goalkeeper. The winner of the game is the team that scores more goals. Game play involves swimming, treading water , players passing the ball while being defended by opponents, and scoring by throwing into a...

 at the 2007 World Aquatics Championships
2007 World Aquatics Championships
The 2007 World Aquatics Championships or the XII FINA World Championships were held in Melbourne, Australia from 17 March to 1 April 2007...

, one in rowing at the 2010 World Rowing Championships
2010 World Rowing Championships
The 39th 2010 World Rowing Championships were held at Lake Karapiro, near Cambridge, New Zealand between October 29 – November 7. The annual week-long rowing regatta was organised by FISA . Usually held at the end of the northern hemisphere summer, they were held later in the year in the southern...

, six in alpine skiing at the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships held in 2003
FIS Alpine World Ski Championships 2003
The FIS Alpine World Ski Championships 2003 were held in St. Moritz, Switzerland, from February 2-16, 2003.St. Moritz previously hosted the world championships in 1974, as well as the 1948 Winter Olympics and the 1928 Winter Olympics ....

 and 2005 and two at the World Taekwondo Championships in 2011
2011 World Taekwondo Championships
The 2011 World Taekwondo Championships is the 20th edition of the World Taekwondo Championships, and was held at Gyeongju Indoor Stadium in Gyeongju, South Korea from May 1 to May 6, 2011.-Men:-Women:-Medal table:-Team ranking:...

 and 2007
2007 World Taekwondo Championships
The 2007 World Taekwondo Championships were the 18th edition of the World Taekwondo Championships, and were held in Beijing, China from May 18 to May 22, 2007.-Men:-Women:-Medal table:-Men:-Women:-References:*...

. Croatian athletes also won the 2005 Davis Cup
2005 Davis Cup
The 2005 Davis Cup was the 94th edition of the most important tournament between nations in men's tennis. A total of 130 teams participated in the tournament...

.

Croatia hosted several major sport competitions, including the 2009 World Men's Handball Championship
2009 World Men's Handball Championship
The 2009 World Men's Handball Championship took place in Croatia from 16 January–1 February, in the cities of Split, Zadar, Osijek, Varaždin, Poreč, Zagreb and Pula. Croatia was selected from a group of four potential hosts which included the Czech Republic, Greece and Romania.The opening game and...

, the 2007 World Table Tennis Championships
2007 World Table Tennis Championships
The 2007 World Table Tennis Championships was a table tennis tournament that took place in Zagreb, Croatia from May 21 through to May 27, 2007. China won a clean sweep of all the gold and silver medals.-Medal table:-Events:-Men's Singles:...

, the 2000 World Rowing Championships
2000 World Rowing Championships
The 23rd World Rowing Championships were held between August 1 and August 6, 2000 in conjunction with the World Junior Rowing Championships in Zagreb, Croatia....

, the 1987 Summer Universiade
1987 Summer Universiade
The 1987 Summer Universiade, also known as the XIV Summer Universiade, took place in Zagreb, Croatia . It involved participants from 111 countries and over 6,000 individual sportspersons and members of teams.-Medal table:...

, the 1979 Mediterranean Games
1979 Mediterranean Games
The 8th edition of the Mediterranean Games was held in Split, Yugoslavia from 15 to 29 September 1979. Fourteen nations competed in 26 different sports.The games' mascot was the Mediterranean Monk Seal Adrijana.-Medal table:...

 and several European Championship
European Championship
-List:Athletics* European Athletics ChampionshipsAustralian rules football* EU CupAuto racing* European Championship * European Formula Two Championship * European Touring Car Championship...

s. The governing sports authority in the country is the Croatian Olympic Committee
Croatian Olympic Committee
The Croatian Olympic Committee is the non-profit organization representing Croatian athletes in the International Olympic Committee. The COC organizes Croatia's representatives at the Summer and Winter Olympic Games. It also organizes the Croatian contingent at smaller events such as the...

 , founded on 10 September 1991 and recognised by the International Olympic Committee
International Olympic Committee
The International Olympic Committee is an international corporation based in Lausanne, Switzerland, created by Pierre de Coubertin on 23 June 1894 with Demetrios Vikelas as its first president...

 since 17 January 1992, in time to permit the Croatian athletes to appear at the 1992 Winter Olympics
1992 Winter Olympics
The 1992 Winter Olympics, officially known as the XVI Olympic Winter Games, were a winter multi-sport event celebrated from 8 to 23 February 1992 in Albertville, France. They were the last Winter Olympics to be held the same year as the Summer Olympics, and the first where the Winter Paralympics...

 in Albertville
Albertville
Albertville is a commune in the Savoie department in the Rhône-Alpes region in south-eastern France.The town is best known for hosting the 1992 Winter Olympics.-Geography:...

, France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 representing the newly independent nation for the first time at the Olympic Games
Olympic Games
The Olympic Games is a major international event featuring summer and winter sports, in which thousands of athletes participate in a variety of competitions. The Olympic Games have come to be regarded as the world’s foremost sports competition where more than 200 nations participate...

.

See also


  • World Heritage Sites in Croatia
    World Heritage Sites in Croatia
    -World Heritage Sites:-Tentative List:The following sites are on the Tentative List for Croatia, meaning that the government intends to consider them for nomination in the future:*Zadar - Episcopal complex...



External links