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Two Homeland War veterans achieve historic Atlantic cross for Croatia

Two Croatian war veterans cross Atlantic in rowing boat

Werner Ilić and Martin Cruickshank (Photo credit: Saša Filipin)

ZAGREB, 24 April (Hina) – Two Croatian war veterans, Martin Cruickshank and Werner Ilić, have performed a historic feat of crossing the Atlantic Ocean in a rowing boat after nearly three months

In the 83 days spent on the ocean, Ilić and Cruickshank crossed the Atlantic from the Canary Islands to Bridgetown, Barbados.

Deputy Prime Minister and War Veterans Minister Medved congratulated the two proud veterans on that historic feat, expressing satisfaction that veterans and retired army officers contributed to the promotion of Croatia in the world in that way.

With the project “Paddle across the Atlantic”, under the auspices of the War Veterans’ Ministry, Ilić and Cruickshank put Croatia in the league of ocean rowing countries, which includes only 31 other countries.

With their environmentally friendly boat Fenix, the veterans also raised awareness of the importance of protecting natural resources, especially oceans and seas.

Ilić and Cruickshank are retired Homeland War officers who returned from abroad in the 1990s to defend Croatia. In an ocean-rowing boat and using only paddles, they managed to cross 5,500 kilometres of the Atlantic Ocean.

Two Croatian war veterans cross Atlantic in rowing boat

(Photo credit: Saša Filipin)

They embarked on that journey on 15 January, the 30th anniversary of Croatia’s international recognition, and they completed it on Earth Day.

“We are happy that from now on Croatia will be known in the world for the successful crossing of the Atlantic Ocean only in a rowing boat,” they said.

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