Saturday, 16 July 2022

The Democratic Alliance of Croats in Vojvodina Marks 32 Years of Its Existence

ZAGREB, 16 July 2022 - The Democratic Alliance of Croats in Vojvodina, the oldest political party representing ethnic Croats in Serbia, marked its 32nd anniversary at a ceremony in Subotica on Friday.

Addressing the event, the Democratic Alliance of Croats in Vojvodina president Tomislav Žigmanov spoke about the importance of being included in dialogue and talks on the formation of Serbia's new government.

"We want to be actors in policies that will steer Serbia into European integrations," said he.

Žigmanov, who won a seat in the Serbian parliament in the last elections in April, said that this would open new prospects for the Croat community in Serbia.

The Democratic Alliance of Croats in Vojvodina is the only parliamentary party representing the interests of ethnic Croats. o

The party has over a score of branches, most of them being in larger towns of Vojvodina.

Since its establishment the party has had three presidents: Bela Tonković and Petar Kuntić as Žigmanov's predecessors.

Friday, 20 August 2021

War Criminal Vasiljković Opens Office of His Foundation in Subotica

ZAGREB, 20 Aug, 2021 - The head of the Democratic Alliance of Vojvodina Croats (DSHV), Tomislav Žigmanov, on Friday condemned the opening in Subotica of an office of the Captain Dragan Foundation, run by convicted war criminal Dragan Vasiljković alias Captain Dragan.

The office has been set up in the centre of Subotica, a year after that foundation established its branch in that city in the north of the province of Vojvodina, and the purpose of the foundation is to "assist the Serbs unfairly convicted and imprisoned in the countries of the region," that is in Serbia's neoghbourhood.

In September 2017, Split County Court sentenced Vasiljković to 13.5 years for crimes committed against prisoners of war in the Croatian towns of Knin and Glina during the 1991-95 Homeland War. Born in Belgrade and holding the citizenship of both Serbia and Australia, Vasiljkovic was arrested in 2006 in Australia where he lived under a false name and worked as a golf coach.

He was extradited to Croatia in July 2015 and denied the charges from the very start of the trial. Given that the eight years and nine months he had spent in extradition prison in Australia were credited to his sentence, Vasiljković's sentence expired in March 2020 when he was released from prison in Lepoglava and transferred to the Bajakovo crossing on the border with Serbia and banned from entering the European Economic Area for a period of 20 years.

Addressing the press on the topic of captain Dragan's foundation's office in Subotica, Žigmanov said that he was worried but not surprised.

"We are registering more and more activities by convicted war criminals and the downplaying of their verdicts, their rehabilitation in the public and their influence on public opinion creation," Žigmanov said.

He recalled that ICTY convict Vojislav Šešelj purchased a house to open the office of his Serb Radical Party in the town of Hrtkovci, a byword for the persecution of Vojvodina Croats in the 1990s.

Upon his transfer from Croatia to Serbia, Vasiljković engaged in political activities and ran in parliamentary elections.

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