The Military Order of the Iron Trefoil, also known as the Croatian Cross, was the highest military decoration of the Independent State of Croatia, and it was awarded for "acts of war, achieved by personal incentive, for efforts and good leadership in ventures, which had remarkable success against the enemy."
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The decoration was established on April 27, 1941 by Ante Pavelić (formally prime minister of Croatia and head of the Ustasha government), on behalf of the formal sovereign Tomislavo II, as the highest military honor in Croatia. The Order was granted for particular and relevant acts of war carried out directly by the awarded.
The Order had the following classes:
The statute of the Order also provided that for the same and higher grades than the class II cross, the hereditary noble title of "Vitez" (knight) was granted. For exceptional merits the oak crown sign was awarded in addition to each class.