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Croatia Votes to Join European Union

In a Jan. 2012 referendum, voters supported joining the European Union (EU) by a two-to-one margin. despite a major debt crisis that has affected many EU members, 66% voted in favor of the membership . A majority of Croatian Parliament members and leading politicians supported the referendum as well. After the vote, President Ivo Josipovic said, "This is a big day for Croatia and 2013 will be a turning point in our history." The current plan is for Croatia to become a part of the EU on July 1, 2013. The country will be expected to adopt the euro at that time.

Pending EU membership has prompted Croatia to clean house; Ivo Sanader, a former prime minister of Croatia, was sentenced to ten years in prison for corruption, and Croatian war heroes have been sent to the Yugoslav war-crimes tribunal in The Hague.

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