Croatian PM Plenković: Nobody Will Pin Sanader on Me!

By 14 October 2021

ZAGREB, 14 October, 2021 - Prime Minister and Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) president Andrej Plenković said on Thursday he did not intend to apologise for someone else's sins from a time when he was not a member of the ruling party.

"There was one leader, Ivo Sanader, who ran the HDZ, who, it was found in legal proceedings, abused his office, which resulted in the responsibility of the legal person, the HDZ. The one responsible for that should answer for it," he told the press when asked about yesterday's Supreme Court ruling against the HDZ and its former president Sanader.

"I, as president of the party, democratically elected twice... don't intend to utter sentences of apology for the sins of someone else from a time when I was not even a member of the party. No way."

Plenković then commented on criticisms from the opposition, "which has been hysterical since yesterday," notably from the Social Democratic Party and its president Peđa Grbin, saying he would not be lectured "by a tyrant, a despot, a non-democrat" who expelled 18 MPs from the party "because they have different views on something."

"The SDP is showing totalitarian manners in the 21st century," Plenković said. I'm being lectured by a man who is hugging (Stjepan) Kovač... while he is lying that he is being threatened, who hired an officer to lie?"

He also commented on criticisms from the Bridge party, saying they "almost had an orgasm at the Freedom Festival and screech against vaccination," as well as from the We Can! party, saying they were spreading hate against the HDZ and installing people in the Zagreb Holding company "in a way that was... ridiculous."

"We are the NBA for them and they are a local league. No way," said Plenković.

"I understand those who have 12 or 13% (in approval ratings). Now is the time to strike at the HDZ. But people see the difference. What we are doing today and what was from 2004 to 2009 is not the same and is not related at all. There is no chance that the current leadership will assume responsibility for something which the court ruled was due to the personal responsibility of practically one person."

Expects authorities to find out who radicalised youth who attacked gov't building

Plenković also commented on last year's attack on the government building during which a police officer was wounded.

"I expect the police and DORH (State Attorney's Office) to do everything so that we find out who radicalised the young man who committed a terorist act, from whom he got the gun, who taught him to use that weapon. That doesn't happen spontaneously, that someone aged 22, unprovoked, should commit such an act and almost kill a Croatian policeman."

Plenković said his statement was not pressure but a call on DORH and the police, an expectation from the authorities because, he said, the chapter was not closed and additional steps forward were necessary.

"I believe it was a terrorist attack. He didn't shoot at a bar, a restaurant, but at the building of the Croatian government. He shot at a number of police officers, he shot at windows, at the Legislation Office where lawyers sit," he added.