Croatia at a Glance
|Location:||Southeastern Europe, bordering the Adriatic Sea, between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Slovenia|
|Climate:||Mediterranean and continental; continental climate predominant with hot summers and cold winters; mild winters, dry summers along coast|
|Terrain:||geographically diverse; flat plains along Hungarian border, low mountains and highlands near Adriatic coastline and islands|
|Resources:||oil, some coal, bauxite, low-grade iron ore, calcium, gypsum, natural asphalt, silica, mica, clays, salt, hydropower|
|Population:||4,489,409 (July 2009 est.)|
A Brief Profile of Croatia
The lands that today comprise Croatia were part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire until the close of World War I. In 1918, the Croats, Serbs, and Slovenes formed a kingdom known after 1929 as Yugoslavia. Following World War II, Yugoslavia became a federal independent Communist state under the strong hand of Marshal TITO. Although Croatia declared its independence from Yugoslavia in 1991, it took four years of sporadic, but often bitter, fighting before occupying Serb armies were mostly cleared from Croatian lands. Under UN supervision, the last Serb-held enclave in eastern Slavonia was returned to Croatia in 1998. In January 2008, Croatia assumed a nonpermanent seat on the UN Security Council for the 2008-09 term, and in April 2008 it joined NATO. Croatia is a candidate for eventual EU accession.