Thursday, 12 May 2022

Women Mps Call On Public To Join Protest Rallies In Support Of Mirela Čavajda

ZAGREB, 12 May 2022 - Women MPs from Croatian leftist and liberal parties have called on the public to join protest rallies to be held in several cities across the country on Thursday evening in support of Mirela Čavajda and all women who are denied their legal right to abortion and other forms of medical care.

"It is high time we said enough is enough to the Church, to the (ruling) Croatian Democratic Union and Health Minister Vili Beroš or anyone else who has the cheek to decide on a daily basis on women's rights and the human rights of any individual to decide on their own body. Today we all have a chance to speak out for human rights and women's rights, because if we stay on the sidelines, tomorrow our daughters, granddaughters, mothers, sisters, acquaintances and girlfriends will have to justify their decisions to hypocrites and chauvinists," Mirela Ahmetović of the Social Democratic Party told a joint press conference.

This protest is the foundation for amending the law to enable women to use their own bodies as they saw fit, Ahmetović said, stressing that such an amendment was inevitable and would certainly happen. "Let's show that we are undivided on this issue," she added.

"It is important that we say enough is enough to the tyranny," Ivana Kekin of the Green-Left Bloc said and added: "All opinion polls show that 70 per cent of citizens think that women have the right to decide about their own body. We are all on the same side in this regard."

Kekin said that human, women's and reproductive rights are not respected in Croatia because of a conservative revolution that has been going on for decades. "It is no coincidence that the most conservative people are in charge of the most important health institutions which deny the right to a pregnancy termination."

Katarina Peović of the Workers' Front called for the right to abortion to be restored in the Constitution. "If the right to abortion were included in the Constitution, it would be difficult to interpret it in different ways. It is also important to admit that the Church is highly responsible for the retraditionalisation of society," she said.

"We've had enough of seeing our citizens, including women, going abroad to exercise their rights. Croatia cannot survive like that," Dalija Orešković (Centre) warned.

Protest rallies have been scheduled for 6 pm on Thursday in Zagreb, Pula, Rijeka, Sisak, Split, Šibenik, Osijek, Zadar and the southern island of Korčula to express solidarity with Mirela Čavajda, a 39-year-old who has requested a pregnancy termination because the fetus has been diagnosed with massive brain cancer six months into her pregnancy.

Čavajda recently told the media that all the hospitals in Zagreb she had contacted refused to do a termination of the pregnancy despite the fact that doctors told her that the tumour was so big the child would most likely not live long, or even if it did, it would never have a normal life.

Her lawyer, Vanja Jurić, told Hina on Thursday that the decision by a second-instance commission, which has allowed Čavajda to have her pregnancy terminated, set a precedent in Croatia because it confirmed that a pregnancy termination in such cases was legal. She said they were pleased for the sake of all women who might find themselves in a similar situation in the future.

For more, check out our politics section.

Monday, 21 February 2022

Right-Wing Opposition: Why Would Left-Wing Opposition Be Better than Present Government?

21 February, 2022 - The demand by the centre-left opposition parties in the Croatian parliament on Monday for an early election and the Bridge party's initiative for dissolution of parliament received a lukewarm response from right-wing parties. 

"Croatian Sovereignists are of the view that there should be a radical government reshuffle because this government has lost its legitimacy. If that does not happen, we should not shun away from an early election," the party's MP Marijan Pavliček said while commenting on the demand for an early election following the arrest of Economy Minister Darko Horvat.

He said that an early election was advocated by Social Democratic Party leader Peđa Grbin, who was recently "caught with his hand in the cookie jar" for receiving the family separation allowance and is now "pretending to be a very moral person."

"What makes him different from those who have been arrested? He is a small-time crook and they are big-time crooks," Pavliček said.

"I'm not sure that those aspiring to come to power are much better and that they can promise the Croatian people a change, as shown by their two leaders Bauk and Grbin," added Milan Vrkljan (For a Just Croatia), adding that such people cannot be guarantors of change.

Independent Hrvoje Zekanović said: "What I am in favour of is irrelevant. Whatever the quasi-opposition may be predicting and gathering signatures for is irrelevant, because Andrej Plenković has a majority in parliament and hence a stable government."

Asked whether, if necessary, he would be the 77th hand for Plenković and the majority led by his Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ), Zekanović said that he was in the opposition and that he had not discussed this with the prime minister.

Pavliček said that the Sovereignists would announce their position on Bridge's initiative on Wednesday, while Vrkljan said that Bridge had not asked anything of them yet.

Monday, 23 November 2020

Left-Wing Parties File Criminal Report Against Mayor Bandic for Sljeme Cable Car

ZAGREB, November 23, 2020 - The We Can! and Zagreb is Ours! political platforms on Monday filed a criminal report against Zagreb Mayor Milan Bandic for abuse of office and power and for illegal favouritism related to the construction of the Sljeme cable car.

"According to the conspirator who sent a video to all media outlets with clear evidence, DORH (Office of the Chief State Prosecutor) and the USKOK anti-corruption office should already act ex officio. However, I am filing a criminal report against Bandic for abuse of office and power, graft and conspiracy to commit crimes" Councillor and MP Tomislav Tomasevic said.

That is not only Bandic's but also Andrej Plenkovic's cable car

He filed a criminal complaint also so that institutions would report to him on what they had done, he added.

"For this 13 unlucky years, the City of Zagreb has been waiting for the repair of the old Sljeme cable car or for a new one. The HDZ (Croatian Democratic Union) even set the construction of a new cable car as a condition for forming a coalition with Milan Bandic. So this most expensive cable car in Europe is also HDZ's cable car, not only Bandic's, but also Andrej Plenkovic's cable car," he said.

Coordinator for cable car construction from Bandic's party

In addition to that, in 2016 Bandic appointed Vladimir Gruborovic, a member of the the Main Committee of Bandic's party, as the coordinator of the team for the construction of the cable car, which includes representatives of the City Administration and all city companies.

That is more than enough evidence, Tomasevic said.