Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, through a Member of Parliament Craig Kelly, congratulated April 10th – The Day of the establishment of the Independent State of Croatia (NDH) – to Australian Croats gathered at celebration in Sydney.

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“On behalf of the Prime Minister, who is in Japan, I’m conveying his greetings and good wishes on the occasion of the celebration of the 10th of April to you and all Croats in Australia, and those in Croatia,” said Kelly to people gathered at the Croatian Club “Sydney,” reported “Jutarnji List”, citing writing of the Croatian community in Australia weekly “Boca KroPres”.

The celebration was organized on April 13th, in the presence of some 200 Croats, many Australian politicians and a Ukrainian diplomat.

The Independent State of Croatia, often referred to simply by the abbreviation NDH, was a World War II puppet state of Nazi Germany and Italy established in part of Axis-occupied Yugoslavia.

The NDH was founded on 10 April 1941, after the invasion of Yugoslavia by the Axis powers. The regime targeted Serbs, Jews, Muslims and Roma people, as part of a large-scale genocide campaign in places such as the Jasenovac concentration camp.

The state was actually controlled by the governing fascist Ustaše movement and its Poglavnik, Ante Pavelić, which in turn were primarily under the influence of Nazi Germany. For its first two years up to 1943, the state was also a territorial condominium of Germany and Italy.