Saturday, 10 September 2022

World War Two Anti-Tank Mines Discovered on Rab Island

September the 10th, 2022 - Fascinating anti-tank mines from back during the Second World War have been discovered on the popular Rab island in Northern Dalmatia.

As Morski writes, ever since the beginning of September 2022, the police have registered three voluntary surrenders of dangerous explosive devices by people from the areas of Crikvenica, Gorski kotar and Rijeka. Those individuals handed over one gun, a hand grenade and 31 pieces of different ammunition.

Over the aforementioned days, a German-made anti-tank mine from the Second World War was also found on Rab island. All the explosives discovered were handed in and dealt with by employees of the Rijeka Anti-Explosion Unit and will be disposed of safely and according to the strict rules of the profession.

The police would like to thank the conscientious citizens who joined the "Less weapons, fewer tragedies" campaign, which enabled the voluntary surrender of all types of weapons and explosives without any misdemeanor or criminal sanctions being imposed on anyone.

We'd also like to ask other citizens who still own unregistered explosive devices to hand them over to the police without fear of being sanctioned or punished in any way, and we particularly urge that such dangerous devices are not left out in open spaces in nature or at waste disposal sites, as this greatly endangers the safety of other people.

We'd also like to ask citizens not to touch or bring their explosive devices to the police station themselves, in order to prevent their activation and unwanted injuries, but to instead report the explosives to the police via the number 192. After that, authorised police officers will come and those explosives will then be taken safely away, the police explained.

Detailed information on the implementation of this action, as well as the handing over of weapons and other explosive devices, can be obtained by calling the free phone line 0800 88 92.

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

Thursday, 25 August 2022

Foreign Police Officers in Croatia Get to Work on Brac Island

August the 25th, 2022 - Foreign police officers often appear in Croatia as part of a wider project of which the Republic of Croatia is a part. Brac island has recently been richer for several foreign officers who made themselves available to visitors.

As Morski writes, foreign police officers from Poland, Slovakia, France, Germany and Italy have been on Brac island in Central Dalmatia as part of the "Safe Tourist Destination" project recently.

As part of the "Safe Tourist Destination" project, the group of foreign police from the aforementioned group of countries accompanied by a police officer from the Chief's Office and police officers from the Brac Police Station visited Brac island yesterday. Their host was the head of the Brac Police Station, Zarko Smajic, who was their guide.

The group of foreign police officers toured the town of Supetar, where they also met with the mayor of the town of Supetar, Ivana Markovic, who welcomed them warmly to this very popular island. In the municipality of Postira, they met with the mayor, Sinisa Marovic. Leaders of local communities have long since supported this unique project of the Ministry of the Interior (MUP), which enables foreign police officers to stay and work in the Republic of Croatia during the main summer tourist season.

During their stay on Brac island, the foreign police officers talked with foreign tourists about various different topics.

During their engagements with others in public places, the police made themselves readily available to foreign tourists, all with the aim of providing information and advice to make their stay in Croatia even more pleasant.

The Republic of Croatia is a safe tourist destination and is recognised as such all over the world, and this was once again emphasised by foreign tourists in their conversation with foreign police officers on Brac island.

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

Monday, 18 July 2022

Police Investigating Who Drew Swastika Outside Hotel with Jewish Children

ZAGREB, 18 July 2022 - Police are investigating who drew a swastika outside a hotel in Trilj, about 40 km inland from the southern coastal city of Split, where children from the French Jewish community are staying.

"An investigation is underway to identify the perpetrator," the Split-Dalmatia County police told Hina.

According to media reports, about 60 children from the French Jewish community are staying at the hotel for three weeks. This could not be immediately confirmed at the hotel.

For more news about Croatia, click here.

Saturday, 16 July 2022

Croatian Police Reach Out to Youth Via Popular TikTok Platform

July the 16th, 2022 - The Croatian police have been reaching out to the youth via the wildly popular TikTok platform, but not to warn them to stay away from drugs and drink driving this summer. Instead, they want young people to take more interest in the idea of becoming police officers, and they have a young Rijeka-based content creator to thank.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, thanks to a Croatian TikToker, Croatian police officers have decided to try attract the attention of younger people and popularise the profession of ''policeman'' in a rather unusual manner, as reported by HRT.

Ivan Tokic, a 21-year-old man from Rijeka, is a young entrepreneur and ''content creator''. A TikToker, to be more precise. In the three recorded TikTok reels they came up with together, the Croatian police and Ivan Tokic invited young people to join their ranks.

"The first competition we highlighted is for retraining, this is aimed at people who have finished high school, who can enroll in retraining, complete their course and become trainee police officers. The second competition is for the third grade of the Josip Jovic Police Academy, urging young people who have completed the second grade, meet the requirements and can enroll in the third grade of the police school, to get enrolled," explained Gabrijel Flegar, a Croatian police officer of the the Primorje-Gorski Kotar police administration (MUP).

But what is the relationship between Ivan Tokic and the Croatian police? So far, there is none. This young man came up with the idea of ​​promoting preventive actions carried out by the Croatian police through social media, he prepared all of the necessary documentation, but didn't know how to actually make contact with the "boys in blue", aside from committing a crime to get their attention of course, which he chose not to do.

''I decided to go to the police station with those papers, the people there were kind, they welcomed me with open arms, I was a little anxious about it all, but they were really kind as I said", said Ivan Tokic, a young entrepreneur and content creator from Rijeka.

"We went to meet each other, there were actors and extras, some athletes, Gabrijel showed me all kinds of things, there were a lot of anecdotes and he couldn't tell me everything he wanted to in one single statement," said Tokic of the police officer's enthusiasm at the idea, but the most important things were recorded and posted on the platform for all to see.

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

Monday, 4 July 2022

Split: Croatian Police to Be Assisted by 433 Foreign Colleagues During Summer Season

ZAGREB, 4 July 2022 - A total of 433 foreign police officers from nine countries will be helping their Croatian colleagues in Split-Dalmatia County as part of the Safe Tourist Destination project, launched in 2008.

Their role will be to help in communication between Croatian police and foreign nationals to ensure a more pleasant stay for foreign visitors and foster a sense of safety among them, Split-Dalmatia County police chief Slobodan Marendić told a press conference on Monday.

The foreign police officers will be on duty in Split, Trogir, Omiš, Makarska, and at the airport and maritime police stations. They will also be deployed to other areas, including islands, if necessary.

The foreign police officers participating in the Safe Tourist Destination projects come from Italy, France, South Korea, Germany, Poland, Slovakia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the Czech Republic. In mid-July, they will be joined for the first time by a police officer from the United States.

Foreign police officers usually assist if foreign visitors report a loss of personal documents, are involved in minor traffic accidents, or become the victims of minor criminal offenses.

Patrik Vučković is the first police officer from Bavaria to participate in the project. He was born in Germany, but his parents are originally from northwestern Croatia.

"I hope that German tourists will recognize the uniform and that, when they see it, we will have a nice chat and they will feel safe in Split. I have been here privately several times, but this is my first time here in an official capacity," Vučković said.

For more on travel in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Saturday, 2 July 2022

Two Nationals of Georgia Arrested on Suspicion of Attempted Murder in Mali Lošinj

ZAGREB, 2 July 2022 - Two 25-year-old nationals of Georgia have been arrested on the suspicion of attempted murder of three Croatian nationals in Mali Lošinj on the northern Adriatic island of Lošinj, police said on Saturday.

The incident occurred on Friday night when the two men argued with the three Croatians, aged 21, 22 and 25, and stabbed them. Two of the stabbed men suffered serious injuries.

All three injured men have been taken to a hospital in Rijeka, while the suspects have been placed in custody.

For more news about Croatia, click here.

Monday, 27 June 2022

MUP Bogged Down by Croatian Employers Requesting Work Permits for Foreigners

June the 27th, 2022 - Croatian employers are requesting work permits for would-be foreign employees left, right and centre. With demographic issues and difficulties finding qualified local staff continuing to bite, MUP is having trouble getting through the paperwork in time for the height of the summer season.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the ongoing problem of staff shortages escalated for Croatian employers last summer, and this year it has become even more pronounced because there are more guests, this tourist season could be better than that of 2019, and the desire to travel is great, leading some to describe it as being as if the dam has given way.

There is as much labour here on the domestic labour market as there is, and it isn't enough. As such, Croatian employers are continuing to turn to foreign workers from outside the EEA/EU who need work permits, Novi list reports.

Croatian employers say that even the pool often used in neighbouring non-EEA/EU countries such as Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia has been emptied, meaning that more and more workers are being brought in from distant countries like India, Nepal, the Philippines… To work in Croatia legally, non-EU foreigners, of course, need work permits. And there was a big problem with this at MUP last year as well.

People came from abroad and stayed in workers' accommodation units for weeks, until they got their work permits and began work. The tourism sector asked last year for MUP to speed up the process of issuing work permits, however, in principle the only thing that has changed is that applications can now be submitted online instead of being taken to administrative police stations in person. Despite very small changes, just like in previous years, overworked MUP employees continue to deal with all of these requests manually, one by one.

Robert Palic, an employer in tourism from Crikvenica, who has five catering and hospitality facilities in the very centre, explained what it looks like in practice. He applied for about fifty work permits back in early May and hasn't even received even half to date. However, he says, in the meantime, ten work permits have practically been made pointless because people gave up in the meantime and went and found another job elsewhere.

"There were seven Nepalese nationals among them. I paid the agency through which I can employ these people 10,500 kuna to bring those seven people to Croatia, and then another 4,000 kuna for their work permits. With the proviso that they had to come to New Delhi to the embassy with a work permit to get a visa. When I was told that work permits would be ready, those people headed to New Delhi which is, let's not forget, 550 kilometres away from their homes. They waited there for three days for their work permits to arrive to pick up their visas. However, as those work permits didn't arrive. So of course those people gave up on it,'' Palic explained.

He added that at the administrative police station in Crikvenica he asked if he could return those work permits or get the costs taken away for the paid for the work permits he'd paid for for other workers, because he obviously doesn't need these for Nepalese nationals anymore, but they said that no, he can't.

"I'm losing workers, I'm losing money, and on top of that I have to find a dozen new workers overnight. Until a few days ago, I had all my facilities closed because I can't complete my team, and it's already the middle of June,'' added Palic.

“I understand those two women who have to process all these requests and who are overwhelmed with work, but then things need to be arranged differently, more people need to be hired by MUP, as needed, or the whole story needs to be digitised. After all, the coronavirus pandemic taught us how to deal with everything online. Let them put themselves in my position, the tourist season is here, and there are no people, I can’t do all this and only have three workers. My employees who are already working, can’t do the whole season on their own, it’s unbearable, so I urgently need to find more workers. I need to find them tomorrow, not in a month's time,'' pointed out Palic.

The search for workers did indeed set off on time in Palic's case, but the paperwork issues and MUP's outdated way of handling administrative procedures clearly clouded the plans.

Quotas for foreign workers were abolished, but things are no easier...

When asked by the press about the situation with work permits this year, the Police Administration of Primorje-Gorski Kotar County told us that by Wednesday, June the 5th, the Crikvenica Police Station had received a total of 1,258 applications for residence and work permits for non-EU citizens.

"This number refers not only to seasonal work up to 90 days, but also to the extension of existing permits to one year and the request of the CES application, which includes seasonal work up to six months and so-called ''new employment'' for a period of one year. As for the number of requests received compared to the same period last year, it has more than doubled,'' they said from MUP.

"Every year, there's a growing problem when it comes to finding quality workers in Serbia, because instead of coming to Croatia, more and more of them are going off to work in Western European countries. So there's a shortage of people in this pool of ours as well. And that's why we will all have to look more and more for workers from more distant countries. As for the Nepalese, the idea was to have a dozen of them this year and then have them return home satisfied because then they'll say how much it pays to come here to work, so I'll be able to count on, let's say, 20 employees from this country. And that gives me some sense of security in a situation when this pool of ours is almost empty,'' said Palic, just one of many Croatian employers facing this huge problem which keeps on escalating each and every year.

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

Sunday, 26 June 2022

Croatian Police Working on Implementing New IT Systems

ZAGREB, 26 June 2022 - National chief of police Nikola Milina said on Sunday that Croatia was fully ready to apply the Schengen acquis and was working with others in the European Union on the implementation of new information technology systems.

"The Croatian police service has done all, and there are already several decisions saying that Croatia is technically fully ready to apply the Schengen acquis. Now this process is at a political level," Milina told the press during a visit to Glina, where he attended a ceremony marking the 31st anniversary of the start of armed resistance against the Serb military aggression.

He said that the police were working with others in the EU on the implementation of new large information technology systems and adjustments relating to a new package that is under preparation.

On Friday, the European Council endorsed the recommendation for Croatia's accession to the euro area, and next week the French EU Presidency will start the decision-making process on accession to the Schengen passport-free area. A decision on accession on 1 January might be adopted in the autumn.

Asked about migration, Milina said that the Croatian police were highly trained and prepared, but that this process never stopped.

For more, check out our politics section.

Thursday, 23 June 2022

Changes to How Croatian Police Fines are Prescribed Coming

June the 23rd, 2022 - Changes to how Croatian police fines are prescribed are afoot, with officers now being trained in how to use POS devices similar to those used in cafes and restaurants to facilitate payment by card.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, Croatian police officers are being educated on how to use POS devices, and the cash collection of traffic fines from the beginning of July will no longer be possible, as reported by the Ministry of the Interior (MUP).

From July the 1st, 2022, people will no longer be able to pay cash fines for traffic offenses at the scene of the offense, but from that date, the Ministry of the Interior will switch to cashless collection of fines via POS devices.

For this purpose, the Ministry of the Interior, through the Central State Office for the Development of Digital Society and the Financial Agency, procured 600 POS devices, which are deployed in police departments throughout the Republic of Croatia.

Officers are being trained for this new way of collecting Croatian police fines

The training of police officers on how to use POS devices is underway, and with faster, more efficient and transparent functioning at the scene of the offense, by waiving the payment of fines in cash, the Ministry of the Interior is meeting the recommendations of the Report of the 5th Evaluation Circle of GRECO. This is part of the official body of the Council of Europe which specialises in the prevention of corruption, and which works to improve the control and supervision of the existing system of the payment of fines to police officers, and reduces the risk of corruption among the police officers themselves..

In addition, the aforementioned change includes the recommendations of the Independent Internal Audit Service of the Ministry of the Interior.

"We'd like to emphasise that the police are already using POS devices for the collection of fines out in the field, along with the collection of fines in cash, while from July the 1st, the possibility of paying the fine in cash will no longer exist. A person who, through a POS device, pays a fine at the place where the offense was committed will be handed a Certificate that the fine and the costs of the procedure have been paid, and a slip made upon the transaction performed through the POS device.

What if you don't have your bank card with you?

If person wants to pay their fine at the place of the crime, but is unable to do so because they don't have a card with them, don't have enough funds in their bank account or some other reason, the police officer will hand him a Notice of Misdemeanor. In that case, the fine shall be deemed to have been collected at the place where the misdemeanor was committed if the person in question pays the fine, reduced by half, within three days of receiving the Misdemeanor Notice and submits proof of payment to the body that determined the misdemeanor.

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

Tuesday, 21 June 2022

2021 Sees Highest Crime Resolution Rate

ZAGREB, 21 June 2022 - The crime resolution rate in Croatia in 2021 was the highest since the country declared independence, at 73.1%, shows a report on police work, adopted at a government session on Tuesday.

The report contains information on police results in fighting and preventing crime, and Minister of the Interior Davor Božinović said that the number of property-related crimes dropped by 4.1% in 2021, continuing on years of positive trends regarding crimes that have the biggest effect on citizens' subjective feeling of safety.

The number of cases of grand theft in 2021 was the lowest in the past 10 years, as was the number of burglaries, while the number of cases of grand theft auto and larceny was the lowest in the last 20 years, said the minister.

He added that there were 30 murder cases in 2021, a drop of 16.7% compared to 2020. The year 2021 was the fifth year to see a decrease in the number of murder cases.

Compared to 2020, the police reported 69.5% more corruption-related crimes and 46.1% more perpetrators.

The number of organised crime cases investigated was up by 11.6%.

A total of 100 war crimes were reported, twice as many as in 2020, and the quantity of drugs seized was 7.5% greater than in 2020.

The number of illegal border crossings dropped by 40.18%, while the number of reported cases of people smuggling grew by 37.1%, Božinović said.

Despite the increase in road traffic volume in comparison to 2020, 2021 was the second consecutive year with the lowest number of road fatalities, 292.

For more, check out our politics section.

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