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Slovenian Vote Clears Way For Croatia To Join EU

Croatian Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic (left), Slovenian National Assembly President Janko Veber (center), and Slovenian Prime Minister Alenka Bratusek give a press conference in Ljubljana on April 2.
Slovenia's parliament has ratified Croatia's European Union accession treaty, removing one of the last hurdles to Croatia becoming the next EU member.

Slovenian lawmakers on April 2 voted 82-0 to ratify Croatia's entry.

Previously, border issues and a banking dispute between the two countries prevented Croatia from moving ahead in Zagreb's quest to join the EU.

Slovenian Prime Minister Alenka Barusek attended the parliament session and told deputies after the vote it was a "special day" for both Slovenia and Croatia.

Croatian Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic also attended the Slovenian parliament session.

Zagreb still needs EU members Belgium, Denmark, Germany, and the Netherlands to ratify its accession treaty.

Croatia is tentatively scheduled to officially join the European Union on July 1.

Based on reporting by AP and AFP