Thursday, 25 August 2022

Minister: Pilots to be Provided with Full Legal Support

ZAGREB, 25 August, 2022 - Minister of Public Administration and Justice Ivan Malenica said on Thursday, ahead of a meeting with the pilots accused by Serbia of airstrikes against civilians after Operation Storm, that Croatia will provide them with full legal support and prevent the issuance of an international arrest warrant.

Malenica said that he would meet with the four accused pilots on Friday to discuss further activities regarding the proceedings initiated by Belgrade. He said the pilots should not worry because Croatia would give them full legal support. 

"We will also work on preventing the issuance of an international arrest warrant if Serbia were to make such a request. Croatian pilots have a clear conscience; the Homeland War was a defensive war, as proven before the Hague war crimes tribunal," Malenica said.

The minister added that Serbia had issued a politically motivated indictment, proving that it did not have independent prosecutorial authorities or a functioning legal system.

He recalled that incumbent Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić's role in the Homeland War was well known, as was his war-mongering rhetoric.

"Croatia's legal order is stable. A few years ago, proceedings related to war crimes in Glina were conducted. I leave it to the State Attorney's Office (DORH) to act if it finds elements of criminal acts," Malenica said in reference to President Zoran Milanović's statement that Croatia could also indict Serbia's president.

Malenica also strongly condemned a recent case of domestic violence in Gospić, as well as a statement made by the local prosecutor who, in a comment on the fact that a man who attacked and seriously injured with a knife his wife and her friend on Monday, had been reported for domestic violence a week earlier but was not placed in custody, said: "Where would it take us if all domestic abusers were placed in custody?"

"It was an inappropriate statement. It insinuates that prisons are full and that it is not wise to order pre-trial detention. I strongly deny such claims. There is room in prisons because 60% of prisoners are remand prisoners," he said.

Malenica said that he expected judges to make decisions on pretrial detention if there was a danger that a person may harm someone's life or health.

"I condemn domestic violence. We will not tolerate it. The government has amended the Criminal Code, the Law on Protection from Domestic Violence, we have introduced tougher penalties, increased the number of security measures, introduced the concept of a close person, etc. The thing we can still do is to continue improving the legal framework," said Malenica.

Thursday, 25 August 2022

Deputy PM: Prosecution of War Crimes Test of Maturity for State

ZAGREB, 25 Aug (Hina) - Deputy Prime Minister Anja Šimpraga said on Thursday, at a commemoration for the civilians killed during and in the aftermath of the 1995 Operation Storm in the village of Plavno and the hamlet of Grubori near Knin, that prosecution of war crimes was a test of maturity for Croatia.

More than 30 civilians were killed during, and in the aftermath of Operation Storm in the hamlets of Plavno, including infirm and elderly people, Šimpraga said, noting that the injustice and evil done to local Croats in the early 1990s cannot and must not be used as justification for any crime.

"Prosecution of war crimes is not just about the truth, justice, and satisfaction for the victims' families, it is a test of maturity for us and our state which needs to show that it means it when it says that there is no statute of limitations on war crimes, that all victims are the same and all people equal," she said.

The pain of the families who have lost their dearest ones grows with every unjust court decision, every administrative obstacle to their return, and every outburst of hate towards Serbs, she said.

"Justice has not been served yet, and the vow of silence is stronger than honour and truth," she warned, adding that 27 years since Operation Storm, crimes against civilians had still not been prosecuted.

Only a few indictments for war crimes against Serbs were issued, and the trials resulted in only two convictions, for the crimes at Prokljan and Mandići and for the crime at Kijane near Gračac, she said.

History cannot be changed, and dead people cannot be brought back to life, but life can be brought back to abandoned villages, Šimpraga said, expressing hope that concrete work on revitalising Grubori would begin soon.

In her address, the Deputy PM also spoke about the Croat civilians killed in Škabrnja and other villages in the early 1990s.

MP and Serb National Council (SNV) president Milorad Pupovac said that the killing of Serb civilians during and in the aftermath of Operation Storm in Lika, Dalmacija, Kordun, and Banija should not be used by anyone to spread hate but that it also should not be negated and moral responsibility for it denied.

Speaking of the Grubori atrocity, he said that despite promises made to the UN, local civil and police authorities did not investigate the case or protect the scene of the crime.

Croatian courts and the Hague war crimes tribunal determined that the crime had been committed and that it had been committed by members of the Lučko Anti-Terrorist Unit; however, the trial ended with an acquittal due to lack of evidence, Pupovac said. 

He noted that two years ago, a significant step forward had been made towards post-war reconciliation and better Croatian-Serbian relations, but that unresolved war crimes were seriously undermining the progress achieved.

Attending today's commemoration at Grubori were also Šibenik-Knin County head Marko Jelić and Knin Mayor Marijo Ćaćić.

Thursday, 25 August 2022

Declaration on Cooperation of Serbs from Croatia and Croats from Serbia Initialled

ZAGREB, 25 August, 2022 - A conference on Serbia-Croatia relations was held in Golubić near Obrovac for the 15th consecutive year on Thursday, and the Declaration on the Cooperation of Serbs from Croatia and Croats from Serbia was initialed at the event.

The declaration was signed by Milorad Pupovac (SDSS) and Tomislav Žigmanov (Democratic Alliance of Croats in Vojvodina - DSHV), and the document will be confirmed by the bodies of both communities.

Since the countries are burdened by other relations, we considered it necessary to underscore our need to cooperate and to call on our countries to start cooperating on matters of our common interest, said MP Pupovac.

The declaration is the result of many years of cooperation and is an important step towards expanding institutional cooperation, said DSHV head Žigmanov.

I believe it will have an effect not only on the members of our community but also on the policies of interstate relations, he said.

The next step is to create a concrete programme for cooperation between institutions of the Croatian people in Serbia and institutions of the Serbian people in Croatia, which will touch on the issue of political relations, as well as of new forms of cooperation between the two sides.

"There is no doubt that the circumstances in Europe and the world have not favoured the cooperation between Croatia and Serbia, but there is also no doubt that the policies of Zagreb and Belgrade did not protect the area of cooperation, neither against internal relations nor against global influences," Pupovac added.

During the conference on Serbia-Croatia relations, participants dealt with topics related to heroisation and political myths in Croatia and Serbia, and they also discussed EU subsidies for encouraging the rural development of Dalmatia.

The conference was attended by scholars, representatives of the DSHV and the SDSS, as well as by other political representatives of Serbs from Croatia and Croats from Serbia and local officials.

The event was organised by the Association for History, Cooperation and Reconciliation from Golubić (Obrovac) and the Centre for History, Democracy and Reconciliation from Novi Sad.

Thursday, 25 August 2022

No professional Omission in Matijanić Treatment, Only Irregularities in Procedure.

ZAGREB, 25 August, 2022 - The analysis of the conduct of medical professionals in the treatment of journalist Vladimir Matijanić, who died on 5 August, did not detect any professional omission, and only minor procedural mistakes were identified, showing the findings of the inspection of this case, presented on Wednesday.

The minor irregularities in the provision of medical assistance by the KBC Split hospital and other medical institutions in Split to reporter Matijanić refers to the fact that Matijanić's check-up at the infectious disease unit's emergency room on 2 August 2022 was performed by a resident, which, the analysis reads, was not completely in line with the rules, and also to the incomplete medical records after the second intervention of a team of the county's emergency medicine department as well as to the procedural irregularities in the autopsy of the deceased patient.

Those irregularities have not adversely impacted the analysis of the whole case, an official of the Health Ministry, Mirjana Tadić, told the press conference on Wednesday in Zagreb.

The above-mentioned irregularities are also the reason why the findings of the inspection will be forwarded to the Croatian Medical Chamber and the Office of the Attorney-General (DORH) in Split.

After Matijanić, who was diagnosed with COVID-19 and had underlying conditions, died in his home in Split on 5 August, Matijević's partner, reporter Andrea Topić, claimed that he did not receive adequate medical assistance.

Immediately after these accusations were made by Topić, on 6 August, the health ministry ordered the inspection into medical assistance to the reporter.

The findings of the inspection presented on Wednesday afternoon show that "the death was the consequence of unpredictable, that is, rapid-developing course of myocarditis and lung changes as complications of COVID-19."

The combination of two cases of acute inflammatory developments of vital organs -- heart and lungs -- led to the rapid deterioration of heart and lung functions, resulting in the cardio-respiratory arrest of the patient. The rapid deterioration of the condition of the patient shows that rapidly progressing myocarditis was crucial in causing the death in a very short period, reads the analysis.

The complications of COVID-19 were coupled with the patient's chronic and autoimmune diseases and medication non-adherence, as confirmed by the autopsy report.

During the two-hour press conference, reporters asked why nobody in the healthcare system suspected a possible more serious course of the COVID-19 diagnosis with Matijanić and why a medical team of the Split County's emergency medicine institute had not ambulanced him to the hospital after they visited him at his home on 5 August, and Matijanić died 90 minutes after they left his flat.

Infectious diseases specialist Miroslav Mayer explained that during his first check-up at the infectious disease unit's emergency room in Split, Matijanić had only mild symptoms, and his positive test for COVID had been done just 12 hours before that examination.

It is an extremely small chance that those findings could indicate high risks. I am sorry that an X-ray of his heart and lungs had not been taken; however, we have the COVID epidemic, and over 100 and more patients come to the emergency room on a daily basis, and therefore it can happen that patients with milder symptoms are usually discharged after the check-up and told to come back if their condition deteriorates, said Mayer, explaining that Matijanić was also advised to come back to this emergency room of the KBC Split.

Infectious disease specialist Ivan Puljiz, a member of the ministry's inspection team, said that the resident physician who examined Matijanić on 2 August had advised him to go to the hospital in the event of the deterioration of his condition and also that his GP issued a referral for his admission to the infectious disease unit's emergency room.

The infectious disease unit's emergency room was available. He could have come. He should not have waited for the second or third day or telephone calls to the county's emergency medicine institute, said Puljiz admitting that "after a battle, everyone is a general."

The press conference was addressed by health Minister Vili Beroš , other members of the inspection team, and the late Matijanić's GP, and all of them extended condolences once again at Matijanić's death. 

Thursday, 25 August 2022

Croatia's Coronavirus Update: 1,051 New Cases, 10 Deaths, 426 Recoveries

ZAGREB, 25 August, 2022 - In the last 24 hours, Croatia has conducted 3,367 coronavirus tests, and 31% of them,  that is 1,051, have turned out to be positive, the country's COVID- 19 crisis management team reported on Thursday.

There are currently 6,950 active cases, including 606 hospitalised COVID patients, and 19 of them are placed on ventilators.

Over 5.12 million tests for this infectious disease have been conducted in Croatia since 25 February 2020.

The health authorities have detected 1,209,580 cases of the infection. So far, 16,622 people diagnosed with COVID, have died, while there have been 1,186,008 recoveries, including 426 in the last 24 hours.

Nearly 71% of adults have been vaccinated.

Thursday, 25 August 2022

Will an American Guard save Croatian Basketball?

25th August 2022 - According to the Croatian Basketball Federation (HKS) news, Croatian Basketball National Team Coach Damir Mulaomerović has presented his final 12 man rosters for the pre-qualifiers and the Euros before tonight's pre-qualifier match against Poland.

Roko Rogić, who did not play at the tournament in the Czech Republic, had already left the national team earlier and now the coach removed and thanked Pavlo Marčinković, Mateo Drežnjak and Goran Filipović.

 

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Croatian Basketball National Team Coach Damir Mulaomerović (Photo: HKS / Marin Sušić)

The Croatian jersey will be worn like this during the next weeks:

  • 1 Toni Perković
  • 3 Jaleen Devon Smith
  • 4 Roko Prkačin
  • 7 Krunoslav Simon
  • 8 Mario Hezonja
  • 9 Dario Saric
  • 10 Lovro Gnjidic
  • 17 Karlo Matković
  • 27 Ivan Ramljak
  • 30 Dominik Mavra
  • 40 Ivica Zubac
  • 44 Bojan Bogdanović

Biggest surprise for many is probably the nomination of american national Jaleen Devon Smith. The 193cm guard who just extended his contract with ALBA Berlin after winning the german championships against Euroleague team Bayern Munich in the finals has been naturalized (a fancy word for beeing granted Croatian Nationality which you would not be granted if the country did not expect to benefit from it). The decison came after the dissolution of the National Federation's so called "Expert Council for Men's Basketball", which acted as an advisory body of the Board of Directors. The group, headed by Dino Rađa was expressly against bringing a foreigner into the national team. The association led by Stojko Vranković, however hopes that a new American in the position of play maker can make the nation's problems disappear. Slobodna Dalmacija reported in detail on July 22nd, 2022 but until now the newly added Croatian's debut has not been given. 

 

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Croatia's new No. 3 Jaleen Devon Smith (Photo: ALBA Berlin / Daniel Löb)

 

After dropping out of the World Cup 2023 Qualification by finishing last in its group with Slovenia, Finnland and Sweden, Croatia now needs to first earn the right to be allowed to try to qualify for the World Cup in 2025 in a group with Poland, Switzerland and Austria. The official matches for Croatia that are now coming up, are:  two pre-qualification matches for EuroBasket 2025 (August 25 in Poland and August 28 against Switzerland in Opatija) and the European Championship from September 1 to 18.

Tickets for  Croatia - Switzerland (August 28 at 20:00)  can be purchased through the udnice.hr system  or  at the box office of the 'Marino Cvetković' hall in Opatija on the day of the match.

The pre-qualification matches are broadcast by Sport Klub, and the European Championship by Sport Klub and HRT.

 

OFFICIAL MATCHES OF CROATIA

PRE-QUALIFICATIONS FOR EURO 2025
• August 25, 2022 Poland - Croatia August 25, 2022 at 18:30 (broadcast available on SK 3)
• August 28, 2022 Croatia - Switzerland August 28, 2022 at 20:00

EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP, 1.-18. September 2022
• Croatia - Greece September 2, 2022 at 17:00
• Great Britain - Croatia September 3, 2022 at 14:15
• Croatia - Estonia September 5, 2022 at 14:15
• Italy - Croatia September 6 2022 at 21:00
• Croatia - Ukraine September 8, 2022 at 14:15

Thursday, 25 August 2022

Luxury Superyacht Spotted in Šibenik, Sails the Adriatic Islands

August 25, 2022 – Emerald Azzurra, a luxury superyacht of the Scenic Group sails the Adriatic. Spotted in Šibenik for the day, it sailed off to the Kornati islands. Its offer includes cruises with stops around several Croatian islands and coastal cities.

As reported by Tportal, after spending the day in Šibenik, the 110-meter luxury cruise ship Emerald Azzurra, with seven decks, two suites of 110 square meters and another 44 smaller suites with terraces and balconies and six luxurious cabins, set sail for Kornati.

TCN reported on the incredible story of Scenic Eclipse, the world's first polar discovery yacht cruiser, built in Croatia, christened by Dame Helen Mirren, and winner of the Cruise Critic Best New Luxury Ship 2019. A ship which is unique and setting the standards in high-end luxury cruise tourism. Read the full story here. 

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(Dame Helen Mirren christening Scenic Eclipse in New York)

The Emerald Azzurra is a luxury superyacht built this year in the Vietnamese shipyard Ha Long and the first transoceanic yacht of the Emerald Cruises company. It is owned by Glen Moroney, the Australian founder and chairman of the Scenic Group, which includes Emerald Cruises.

Better known for its fleet of contemporary riverboats, Emerald Cruises has embarked on its first venture into ocean cruising using its own custom-designed superyachts. Emerald Azzurra for one hundred passengers is the first one, and in 2023 Emerald Sakara should set sail. Seventy-three crew members caring for one hundred passengers. You can see what it looks like from the inside and what it offers here.

If you decide to take an eight-day Adriatic cruise from Venice to Dubrovnik with visits to Krk, Zadar, Šibenik, Hvar, Split, Korčula and Dubrovnik at this time next year, you will have to shell out 6,900 pounds (HRK 61,000) per person.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated Lifestyle section.

Thursday, 25 August 2022

Talk of Classes Going Back Online - This Time not due to Covid

August 25, 2022 - President of the Croatian County Association (HZŽ), the prefect of Brod-Posavina spoke about the rise in energy prices and the possibility of re-introducing online classes - not because of the pandemic, but to save energy.

As SiB writes, the introduction of the euro, the decentralisation of state property, centers of excellence, and the multi-year program of cadastral surveying of construction areas, are all topics that were discussed on Wednesday at the Executive Committee of the Croatian County Association in Varaždin.

President of HZŽ, Brod-Posavina prefect Danijel Marušić said that the prefects discussed, among other things, current issues from the Ministry of Finance.

“First of all, there is a 20 percent limit to certain activities of the counties, that is, 20 percent of the original budget that can be used for salaries. Many counties, especially after the merger of state administration offices and counties, exceed that, so we think that had to change the laws”, said Marušić.

Marušić also spoke about the rise in energy prices and the possibility of re-introducing online classes - not because of the pandemic, but to save energy.

“The fact that we directed all our institutions to energy-renovate buildings, and we renovated 23 schools and all hospital buildings of our hospital system, turned out to be the right way and the savings were up to 75 percent”, Marušić pointed out, adding that the idea of ​​online teaching with the aim of saving energy is interesting and not impossible.

The host, Varaždin prefect Anđelko Stričak, said that all prefects are concerned about the announced increase in energy prices, especially when it comes to institutions.

“As far as the Varaždin County is concerned, at the beginning of the year, we secured enough energy for the whole year. Even then, these prices were rising and were 50 to 70 percent higher than the year before. We are secure until the end of the year," said Stričak.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated News section.

Thursday, 25 August 2022

13th Edition of IT Conference KulenDayz in Slavonia and Baranja

August 25, 2022 - From September 2nd to September 4th, the largest regional IT conference will be held, organised by the team from MS Community, the Osijek Software City association, the PMI Croatia association, the Business Incubator BIOS, and partners: City of Osijek, J. J. Strossmayer University and the Academy of Arts and Culture in Osijek.

„In addition to the previous sponsors, this year we gained reinforcement from some new ones, with whom we are preparing 3 days of first-class knowledge, fun, and unforgettable socialising in Slavonia and Baranja. Each year we strengthen the program, which would not be possible without the tireless individuals who do their best to raise the bar for the quality of the conference“, said Conference Director Bernardin Katić.

During the 3 days of the conference, there will be an interesting program for all fans of the IT industry, as well as for the young ones. The topics range from advanced programming, database, IT Pro, web technology, design, project management, and game development, to an open part, where the lectures are formed at the event.

A major refreshment to the conference this year is brought by a new sponsor - EPAM USA, which will cover the KulenDayzKidz program.

The organization of the conference would also not have been possible without the support of the teams from King ICT, Tria, Undabot, Optiva, Joberty, Infobip, Nephos, and Evolutio.

Conference program:

FRIDAY – 2nd September 2022

The program starts with pre-conference training in seven different areas. The locations of the training are the Kopački Rit Nature Park and the Kopačevo Ethno Village.

SATURDAY – 3rd September 2022

On the main day of the conference, over 50 lectures will be held at the Academy of Arts and Culture and the Stara Pekara centre. The courtyard will be the place to socialise through the well-known In Da Sofa concept, stalls, and exhibitors who will make sure that there is no shortage of food and drinks. At the end of the day, a legendary party and gathering await!

SUNDAY – 4th September 2022

A day of relaxation in Tikveš for a team-building event with a tour of the newly opened museum.

IT conference for the young ones

In addition to the main program on 3rd September, an IT conference for children will take place: KulenDayz Kidz - a workshop intended for children aged 7-15 to strengthen their skills with computers, communication, and teamwork. This year's the theme is Scratch and HTML where the little ones will learn to create websites and a simple game.

Kulen, rakija, chillis, and first-class knowledge - it smells like a good invitation to apply!

Registration is open until August 30, and the number of places is limited to 500. The organisers invite you to secure your place in time.

More about the conference at www.kulendayz.com.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated Lifestyle section.

Thursday, 25 August 2022

Could Croatia Reintroduce Coronavirus Measures? Capak Says So

August the 25th, 2022 - Could Croatia reintroduce measures against the spread of coronavirus? Croatian Public Health Institute director Krunoslav Capak believes so, although with the much more extensive understanding of the virus we now have, those measures would be very mild.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, Krunoslav Capak has stated that given the fact that we're now far better acquainted with the novel coronavirus, we know a little more about it and how it functions, although it always surprises us in some way, we can say that strict epidemiological measures such as lockdowns, closures, bans on gatherings etc, will probably no longer exist.''

He added that classic epidemiological measures are still being recommended, such as keeping a certain level of physical distance from others, wearing masks in places where there are more people, for example, when using public transport or going to concerts.

"The possibility of some measures coming back, however mild, exists", Capak said, before adding that is is what we have at our disposal - that is, social distancing and wearing a mask. If necessary, if the Croatian epidemiological situation worsens and if this measure proves to be effective, the Civil Protection Directorate will certainly resort to such a measure.

Capak also said that "we do now have quite a large number of patients" - for the last week, the average has been 790 per day among those who are confirmed to be positive for COVID-19 following a PCR test, and there are still about the same number of those who are positive for the virus on rapid antigen tests which can be done at home.

"Given that this is a mild variant of the disease, Omicron, and now we also have Omicron BA.4 and BA.5, which is an even milder but more contagious variant, we probably also have a lot of asymptomatic cases that we don't even know about,'' said Capak for HRT.

"If we judge ourselves by these PCR-positives, that is, those we report as sick, then we can say that this number is no longer growing, but stagnating, varying a little from day to day, but stagnating so that we think that we're only now at the peak of that BA.4-BA.5 wave," he said.

Low vaccination rate

Capak added that we are threatened with a new wave if a new mutation does develop.

Referring to the comment about the large number of deaths from or with the coronavirus even during this time in which a far milder variant is dominant, Capak said that with Omicron, we have about 700 PCR-positive and an average of 12 deaths per day, while at the peak of the Delta variant back in November of last year we had five to six thousand PCR-positive and an average of 52 deaths per day.

"This is a somewhat milder form of the disease," he said.

He pointed out that the Croatian population older than 60 years is much less vaccinated than in many other European countries, where the rate stands at more than 90 percent for people over 60 and 80 years old, while in this country it is between 70 and 80 percent for the same population.

The lack of reliability of tests performed at home

Answering a question about the reliability of antigen tests which can be performed at home, Krunoslav Capak said that the technique of taking the swab is very important, such as whether the swab is pushed deep enough into the nose to wipe the mucous membrane on which the virus is located.

“The home tests and the rapid antigen tests that we have now are also used in laboratories, so they are quite reliable, but they can't match PCR testing, which is 99 percent sensitive and reliable. So, PCR testing is still the golden rule and the gold standard in coronavirus diagnostics," said Capak.

Capak also said that at the moment, very few people in this country have been vaccinated with a fourth dose, while we have almost a million people who have been vaccinated with three doses, expressing the hope that they will also be vaccinated with the fourth.

For more on coronavirus in Croatia, make sure to check out our dedicated section.

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