Title: The Republic of Croatia

Population: 4,208,973

Population Change: -0.06

National Average Age: 42

Urban Percentage: 78

Christian Population: 4,107,000

Christian Percentage: 90.1

Introduction: 'Croatia is an Eastern European country with a long coastline on the Adriatic Sea. Encompassing more than a thousand islands it''s also crossed by the Dinaric Alps. Its inland capital Zagreb is distinguished by its medieval Gornji Grad (Upper Town) and diverse museums. The major coastal city Dubrovnik has massive 16th-century walls encircling an Old Town with Gothic and Renaissance buildings.'

Overview: 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 along with a majority of Croatia's ethnic Serb population. Under UN supervision the last Serb-held enclave in eastern Slavonia was returned to Croatia in 1998. The country joined NATO in April 2009 and the EU in July 2013.