Wednesday, 28 October 2020

Miroslav Skoro Tests Positive for COVID-19

ZAGREB, Oct 28, 2020  - Homeland Movement leader and member of Parliament Miroslav Skoro tests positive for COVID-19, he said in a Facebook post on Wednesday.

"I have developed mild symptoms. I am following doctor's orders and expect a speedy recovery," Skoro said.

He said he has been in self-isolation since October 16 when he attended a meeting of the parliamentary Committee on Home Affairs and National Security and was in contact with Committee member Franko Vidovic (Social Democratic Party) who later turned out to be infected. "In the meantime, this virus has been confirmed in me too," Skoro wrote.

After the Committee meeting, two SDP Committee members and four clerks have been ordered to self-isolate. The meeting was also attended by senior officials from the State Attorney's Office, the Security and Intelligence Agency (SOA) and the police.

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Tuesday, 4 August 2020

Homeland Movement Says Won't Attend Official Ceremony in Knin

ZAGREB, Aug 4, 2020 - The opposition Homeland Movement party, led by Miroslav Skoro, said on Tuesday that its delegation, during a visit to Knin on August 5 for the commemoration of the 25th anniversary of Operation Storm, would not attend the official ceremony.

The party said one of the reasons why it would not attend the official ceremony was the fact that President Zoran Milanovic does not want units of the wartime Croatian Defence Force (HOS) to be part of the official protocol, and that one of Homeland Movement members of parliament was HOS general Ante Prkacin, who, it said, would be insulted by the party's attendance at the ceremony.

The Homeland Movement said it wanted to "celebrate the victory with the people" while the area where the official ceremony would be taking place would be cordoned off.

The party also said that statements by the HDZ and its coalition partner the Independent Democratic Serb Party (SDSS) ahead of the 25th anniversary of Operation Storm put emphasis on individual negative experiences of representatives of one part of the Serb minority, instead of on those who took part in the 1995 military operation.

"Instead of celebrating the magnificent victory, the 25th anniversary of Operation Storm has turned into a political show by Plenkovic and Milanovic aimed at promoting the Croat-Serb coalition that is based on trade-offs. The Homeland Movement refuses to give legitimacy to what should have been a celebration of the Croatian victory and has been turned into a commemoration for the Serb victims. We respect all victims, but on the 25th anniversary of Operation Storm, guilt cannot be equated and the aggressor cannot be turned into the victim," the party said.

Tuesday, 21 July 2020

Homeland Movement Party Chief Nominated for Deputy Parliament Speaker

ZAGREB, July 21, 2020 - Homeland Movement whip Milan Vrkljan said on Tuesday the party would nominate its president Miroslav Skoro as a deputy parliament speaker.

"The Homeland Movement will have... one deputy speaker, two committee chairs, two committee deputy chairs, one parliamentary group chair, and 13 seats on all parliamentary committees from the opposition quota," Vrkljan told the press.

Of the five deputy speakers, it is a usual practice that two come from the ranks of the Opposition.

He said the opposition was extremely fair at Monday's meeting and that they "managed to agree with the SDP, Bridge, the Sovereignists and We Can! simply, easily and with a lot of good intentions."

As for We Can! leader Tomislav Tomasevic's statement that this coalition could abstain from voting for Skoro as one of the deputy parliament speakers, Vrkljan called it "activist habits which some MPs brought from their campaigns."

He said all opposition parliamentary groups agreed yesterday to have joint candidates for deputy speakers, for all groups and committees.

"Based on that, the party which doesn't support a joint proposal will be excluded by all of us from the allotment of seats on parliamentary committees, but I believe they will find the strength in themselves and democratic customs to support anyone legitimately nominated in the Croatian parliament," said Vrkljan.

Friday, 19 June 2020

Ex-President Shows Her Middle Finger As Sign of Support for Women

ZAGREB, June 19, 2020 - Former president Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic has joined women who have shown their middle finger at statements about abortion made by Homeland Movement leader Miroslav Skoro and some other politicians, making an off the photo of herself with her middle finger extended.

"I am joining all women who with this 'indecent' act are showing their stand and raising their voice against those who are trying to take us centuries back," Grabar-Kitarovic told the Jutarnji List daily, to which she sent her photo.

The former president said the time was gone when men made decisions for women.

"I have always advocated life but I have also advocated a life that has the right to choose. Without pressure, without stigmatisation and without conditions, particularly in the most sensitive situations such as rape," Grabar-Kitarovic said, adding that she had shown her middle finger as a sign of support for "us women and our rights as well as for men who support us."

Grabar-Kitarovic's statement was one in a number of reactions prompted by Skoro's statement that "if a woman becomes pregnant after being raped, she should agree with her family what to do next."

Commenting on those reactions, Skoro said that his statements were being taken out of context because there was nothing he or the election candidates of the Homeland Movement could be reproached for.

Thursday, 11 June 2020

Skoro: There Are Better Solutions in Energy Than Buying MOL's Stake in INA

ZAGREB, June 11, 2020 - Homeland Movement leader Miroslav Skoro said on Thursday he did not agree with the government's plan to buy MOL's stake in INA because he explained in Bjelovar, that money could be used for much better solutions that would increase Croatia's energy independence.

He described the sale of Croatian oil company INA as a process "in which a number of governments took part and which has caused irreversible damage to Croatia."

The Hungarian stake in INA has been estimated at HRK 16-17 billion and I believe that Croatia can make much better solutions in the energy sector for that money, Skoro told reporters.

"No one can buy Croatian oil sources, they can only get a concession. We import 40% of energy, yet we don't consider hydro-electric power plants as energy sources but have wind parks... We won't run further into debt to procure energy."

Skoro said the introduction of the euro should be put to a referendum, criticised the government's tax policy, saying foreign investors had a rule called Anything But Croatia and said he would join the March for Life.

He said the focus of his visit to Bjelovar was agriculture. "We live in a country which isn't sovereign in many areas, notably in the agriculture and food sector. The crisis caused by coronavirus gives us the opportunity to change a policy which is concentrated on trade and imports because we can feed not only Croatia but a much larger region too."

Sunday, 31 May 2020

HDZ Official: Homeland Movement's Mission Is To Undermine Christian Democrat Camp

ZAGREB, May 31, 2020 - Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) vice-president Ivan Anusic said on Sunday that the mission of Miroslav Skoro and his Homeland Movement in the coming parliamentary election was to "undermine the Christian Democrat and people's camp, the kind of which Social Democrats are unable to form on their own."

Anusic said in a statement for the press that during his visit to Vukovar on Saturday, Skoro, whose platform is based on the 1991-95 Homeland War, had to answer a question from which he had been hiding ever since he returned to the political arena, namely where he had been in 1990.

Anusic said that Skoro had to confirm that he had been in the United States at the time, visiting Croatia several times, also to attend a rally of the Coalition of People's Accord, which, Anusic said, "was a fierce opponent of Christian Democracy as advocated by then HDZ leader Franjo Tudjman."

"The same way he sided with those who did not want Croatia's independence with Tudjman at its helm back then, so in 2019 with his political engagement he helped Zoran Milanovic become President," said Anusic, noting that the Homeland Movement's mission in the coming election was to topple the Christian Democrat and people's camp the kind of which, he said, Social Democrats were unable to form on their own.

Monday, 11 May 2020

Škoro and Croatian Sovereigntists Sign Coalition Agreement

ZAGREB, May 11, 2020 - Homeland Movement leader Miroslav Škoro and representatives of the Croatian Sovereigntists party signed on Monday a coalition agreement on joint participation in the coming parliamentary election.

Škoro told a press conference that after the agreement with the Bloc for Croatia his Homeland Movement had also reached an agreement with the Croatian Sovereigntists to run in the elections together.

"We are extremely pleased. We still want talks to continue so that everyone seeking change in Croatia can join this political camp," Škoro told a press conference.

"Croatia wants all of us to be together and finally offer a political alternative. The Croatian Sovereigntists will be, together with the Homeland Movement and other partners, the alternative that Croats have been looking for a long time," Hrvoje Zekanović of the Croatian Sovereigntists said.

Expressing satisfaction with the agreement, Marijan Pavliček, the leader of the Croatian Conservative Party, said that the patriotic and sovereigntist camp had been fragmented for the past 20 years and that this was the first time Croatian citizens were provided with a joint political option that would be an alternative to the left and right political elites.

Pavliček believes the newly-established coalition will be the biggest surprise in the upcoming election.

Noting that Croatia has been waiting for real political changes for a long time, Ladislav Ilčić (HRAST) underscored that real changes could not be expected to stem from the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) or the Social Democratic Party (SDP).

More news about Miroslav Škoro can be found in the Politics section.

Tuesday, 5 May 2020

Plenković Says HDZ Won't Lose Voters to Škoro

ZAGREB, May 5, 2020 - Prime Minister and HDZ party leader Andrej Plenković said on Monday that his party was not afraid that it would lose voters to right-wing parties that have been gathering around Homeland Movement leader Miroslav Škoro.

Addressing reporters ahead of a session of the HDZ leadership, Plenković said that regardless of when the parliamentary elections would be held, the HDZ would win them.

Plenković would not comment on a session of the HDZ branch in Zagreb, which was expected to meet on Monday evening to discuss cooperation with Zagreb Mayor Milan Bandić.

Plenković recalled that an agreement had been reached by the coalition partners in the Zagreb City Assembly to hold the next assembly session via video link.

Plenković does not believe that the latest developments signal a crisis in relations between the coalition partners in Zagreb and believes that an agreement should be reached.

HDZ City Assembly member Ivan Ćelić said after today's session of the party branch in Zagreb that City Assembly chair Drago Prgomet of the HDZ, who had announced that the session would focus on the coalition with Bandić's party, excused himself so the matter was not discussed.

The bone of contention between the HDZ and Bandić is the decision to hold the City Assembly session online, which Mayor Bandić has refused.

Prgomet said Bandić's move was an act of belittling the HDZ and the City Assembly, which was why he announced that the HDZ's cooperation with Bandić's party in Zagreb would be reconsidered.

Ćelić said that it was still not known in what format the City Assembly session would be held but that the HDZ wanted it to be held online to help prevent the spreading of the coronavirus.

Reporters asked HDZ political secretary Ante Sanader if he expected Plenković to put forward a concrete date for parliamentary elections at the party leadership's meeting today, to which Sanader said that they had not discussed the matter and that it was not on the agenda of the meeting.

Asked by reporters if the ruling majority in the national parliament had enough hands to dissolve the parliament, Sanader said that they had not discussed the matter with their coalition partners but that he was confident they would have enough hands when the time comes and that the Opposition, too, would vote in favour of dissolving the parliament.

More HDz news can be found in the Politics section.

Sunday, 19 April 2020

Škoro Accuses Government of Rehabilitating Socialist System Through COVID Measures

ZAGREB, April 19, 2020 - The Homeland Movement party leader Miroslav Škoro on Saturday criticised the government's measures to contain COVID-19 as "an economic motorway towards the Middle Ages".

He said that the measures imposed to curb the spread of the infection could "thwart the future of our children for ever."

"Epidemiologists cannot be the only measure for everything that now happens," this famous pop singer and businessman-turned-politician says in his Facebook video message.

If things do not start going back to normal next two weeks in a sensible manner, the country will collapse, the International Monetary Fund will come and our family silver will be sold off, Škoro warns, adding that the current developments are an attempt to rehabilitate the failed Socialist system.

In this context he accused the current government of making use of the containment measures for their political scores and for imposing surveillance of citizens.

He criticised all the government in Croatia since the 2000s for having failed to prepare the country for emergency situations such as the current one.

In this context he underscored that the state budget was too big and not development-oriented.

Škoro, who finished third in the last presidential elections, insists that the situation marked by the coronavirus epidemic should not be an excuse for not conducting reforms and calls for the introduction of e-voting and voting by post in elections.

More news about Miroslav Škoro can be found in the Politics section.

Saturday, 4 April 2020

Miroslav Škoro Formally Registers His Party

ZAGREB, April 4, 2020 - Former presidential candidate Miroslav Škoro has formally registered his political party, the Homeland Movement.

The Homeland Movement has been notified by the Public Administration Ministry that it has been entered in the Register of Political Parties, Škoro announced in a Facebook post on Friday evening.

"Observing the measures to contain the coronavirus, we will organise our activities as much as we can through digital platforms," he wrote.

Škoro said that "anyone who puts Croatia's interests above their own" was welcome to join the party.

More news about Miroslav Škoro can be found in the Politics section.

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