Sunday, 14 May 2023

A 16-Year-Old Dies at Party near Križevci: 17-Year-Old Arrested

May 14, 2023 - Tragedy in the town of Kostanjevac Riječki, near Križevci, where a 16-year-old died at a party in the early hours. His 17-year-old friend has been arrested, reports

The Koprivnica-Križevci police reported this morning that they arrested one person after the death of a 16-year-old in a restaurant in Kostanjevac Rijeka.

On Sunday around 1:23 a.m., the police acted on a report from the Križevci Emergency Medical Service that they were providing medical assistance to a 16-year-old in a restaurant in Kostanjevac Rijeka. The young man later died after receiving medical help. The police reported that one person was arrested and a criminal investigation is being conducted into the circumstances of the event.

As ePodravina has learned, the 18-year-old girl's birthday was celebrated in the wine cellar, a space that is rented as part of the Joker cafe.

At one point, they had an argument in front of the cafe and got into a fight
There were dozens of young people at the celebration, among them two friends who at one point had an argument and in front of the space, on the children's playground near the slide, they were pushed. One young man, one year older, hit another and the latter collapsed after 10, 15 seconds and never woke up. Everything happened after midnight, around 1 o'clock.

"At one point, the 16-year-old fell and ran out of air. He started to suffocate and everyone was shocked when they saw that they could not help him at all. In about half an hour, the ambulance from Križevci arrived, but the young man could not be saved.

"All of this is terrible, especially for the parents and family of the young man who unfortunately passed away. It was clearly the finger of fate that the festival turned into a tragedy the likes of which our region does not remember," say the shocked residents of Kostanjevac Rijeka.

Emergency workers resuscitated the young man for half an hour, but he could not be saved and he died in the ambulance. Unofficially, it is known that the young man (17) who hit his friend ran away from the scene out of shock, but soon returned. The arrested young man is from Pofuk.

"The two of them came to the celebration together, they were good friends, they drank coffee in a cafe and went to celebrate. This is a great tragedy, we can't believe it, we are all in shock," says the local. The young man who died was from Sudovac, a small town next to Kostanjevac Rijeka.


Sunday, 14 May 2023

Visit Croatia's Only Miracle Authenticated by the Vatican

May 14, 2023 - Are you a religious tourist looking to visit authenticated miracles in Croatia? Meet the Eucharistic Miracle of Ludbreg.

I first visited Medjugorje in 1987 after I heard of the alleged appearance of the Virgin Mary to six kids who were tending goats on a remote hillside.

Back then, it had one-third of all the tourism beds in the whole of Bosnia and Hercegovina. The town has grown considerably since then, attracting about 1.5 million tourists a year (compare that with 20 million for all Croatia).

ludbregSome 36 years after my first visit, the so-called Apparitions have still not been formally recognised by the Vatican.

Indeed, the Bishop of Mostar over the years has been openly skeptical over the years.

And while there are 1.5 million visitors to a site not recognised by the Vatican, thousands of pilgrims driving down from Central Europe each year drive past a Croatian destination which not only has an authenticated miracle, but one which you can visit daily, even during Holy Mass. And VERY few tourists know anything about it.

A rather unusual tale of three churches, including one that the Croatian government promised to build in 1739, but only got round to in 1994 during the Homeland War.


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Sunday, 14 May 2023

Looking for a Job in Croatia? This Week's Top 10 from (May 14, 2023)

May 14, 2023 - Looking for a job in Croatia? A new weekly feature on TCN, in partnership with leading job site agency,, who present a selection of weekly job listings.

How hard is it to find a job in Croatia, and what is on offer?

We spoke to Ines Bokan, director of leading jobs site, who kindly took the time for this excellent interview overview.  

This week's top 10 jobs from

Nattoni International is hiring Sales Manager Hospital & Pharmacy (m/f). The location of work is Zagreb. The employer is offering a personal computer, an official phone, and an official vehicle that can be used privately as well as officially. Training will be provided for the new employee. You can apply until 18.05.2023 on the link here

Wine & Friends / LU-MA ugostiteljstvo d.o.o. is hiring Waiter (m/f) in Zagreb. They are looking for a positive and communicative person who will serve food and drink. The deadline for applying is 18.05.2023. You can apply here

Strabag BRVZ d.o.o. is looking for candidates for these positions: Cyber Threat Intelligence Analyst (m/f) and IAM Solution Architect (Identity and Access Management) (m/f). The location of work is Zagreb and Belgrade. Employer offers professional development and advancement opportunities, including training programs and mentorship from industry experts. If you'd like to become part of this dynamic and innovative team, you can click here and apply until 08.06.2023. 

Thermo Stone d.o.o. is hiring Sales Market Manager (m/f) in Istria County and in the export markets. The employer offers an official vehicle for personal and official use and success bonuses. For more benefits and applying process, check this link until 25.05.2023. 

Bestseller is looking for Sales Representative (m/f) in Vienna, Austria. The employer is offering long-term and attractive prospects in a financially strong and expanding company and a variety of employee discounts on all their brands. You can find out more about their benefits on this application. The deadline for applying is 09.06.2023. 

AA Euro Croatia d.o.o. is hiring Quality Assistant (m/f) in Kildare, Ireland. The Employer will give you a permanent full-time role, a competitive salary and support in sourcing accommodation. There is a number of other benefits that you can find on this link until 05.06.2023. 

Next Step career network is looking for Sous Chef (m/f), Senior Chef de Partie (m/f), Cook (m/f), Pizza Chef (m/f) and 16 other roles in luxury resorts in Austria. The employer is offering a competitive salary, paid annual leave, and 3 paid meals a day. You can apply until 25.05.2023. on the application link. 

CC PORTER Sp. z o.o.  is for candidates to fulfill these roles: Sales Advisor with Croatian (m/f) and Sales Specialist with German language (m/f). The employee is offering a 100% remote job and a personal computer and headphones delivery to your home. You can apply until 30.06.2023. on application link. 

Gi Group Staffing Solutions is hiring Sales Representative (m/f) in Slovenia. The employer is offering a company car, laptop and mobile, and a friendly team. You can apply here until 24.05.2023. 

MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geräte GmbH is hiring System Engineer (m/f) in Innsbruck, Austria. The employer is offering employee discounts, flexible working hours, an international environment, and workplace well-being. You can find out more and apply on the link here until 28.05.2023. 

For more career options and job listings, visit


These weekly job listings will appear in the weekly TCN newsletter - you can subscribe here.


What is it like to live in Croatia? An expat for 20 years, you can follow my series, 20 Ways Croatia Changed Me in 20 Years, starting at the beginning - Business and Dalmatia.

Follow Paul Bradbury on LinkedIn.

Croatia, a Survival Kit for Foreigners is now available on Amazon in paperback and on Kindle.

Saturday, 13 May 2023

Croatia's Let 3 Ranking High on Eurovision Betting Sites Ahead of Final

May 13, 2023 - Croatia's Let 3 is unstoppable on the Eurovision betting sites. On Friday morning, their song "Mama ŠČ!" was in the thirteenth spot, but just a few hours later, when the costume dress rehearsal for the big Eurovision semi-final was starting in Liverpool, it rose all the way to the eleventh place.

It's looking good, very good indeed, writes Jutarnji; they could rank in the top ten. If, of course, the jury doesn't end up "cooking something" in the final, and votes are not awarded only according to what is seen and heard on stage.

Let 3 certainly has the sympathy of the media in Liverpool: at the dress rehearsal, along with the representatives of Spain and Finland, in the initial part, i.e. the performers' parade, the boys from Rijeka received the biggest applause from journalists and photographers.

The favourite Loreen, who still firmly holds the first place at the betting sites, was given rather tepid applause by the journalists.

As we wrote back in February when they won the national competition, it finally happened - Croatia has chosen something other than a mellow love song to represent the country at Eurovision. Though there are some exceptionally talented artists in Croatia, and those who represented it so far no doubt fall into this category, let's admit it - it has been formulaic, and that was never enough for the Eurovision Contest. Let 3 prove as much with their song Mama ŠČ. For the first time in a long time, they stirred it up and evoked all sorts of reactions in Croatia and abroad.

This year's winner certainly brings more than talent. They are a cult Croatian rock band formed in 1987 in Rijeka. Their music and performances have never fallen into any category of normal and ordinary. If you've never seen them, it will be confusion at first sight. They have zero problems with nudity, makeup, or latex. They are no strangers to performance art and love using phallic metaphors. They are not afraid to speak up with social commentary, be it on conservative politics, church, feminism, or the rights of marginalized groups. Whether you love or hate them, one thing is for sure - no one remains indifferent to Let 3. Compared to them, as Večernji points out, even the 2021 Eurovision winner, Maneskin, look like made-up theatre puppets.

Who are they?

24Sata summarizes some of Let 3's most brilliant moments. They released their first album 'Two Dogs Fucking' in 1989. From the beginning, Let 3 (Flight 3) were recognizable for their specific humor and bizarre performances.

What was probably their most drastic concept was released in 1997, the album 'Nečuveno' (Unheard of). There was absolutely nothing on the CD, not even recorded silence. Out of 500 copies, 350 were sold. The 'album' contained the band's artist vision - pieces of plastic with serial numbers inserted in a sleeve. The project was accompanied by the video clip 'Neviđeno' (Unseen) - a blank blue screen. It was promoted on the main square in Rijeka.

Their sixth album 'Jedina' (The Only One), was released in 2000, and initially only one copy of the album was made. Let 3 refused to distribute the album, but they did so a few months later.

On February 26, 2001, the band donated the 'Babin kurac' (Grandma's Dick) monument. The monument, four meters high and made of bronze, was revealed in Zagreb, Rijeka, Pula, Split, and Ljubljana. And that wasn't their only sculpture design. In May 2015, they exhibited the sculpture 'Angela Merkel sere' (Angela Merkel Shitting) in Zagreb's Lauba, which they used to criticize the political situation at the time, but also promote the album of the same name.

Members of the band, Mrle and Prlja are also known for their controversial guest appearance with Aleksandar Stanković in HRT's show 'Nedjeljom u 2'. Although they had agreed that there would be no cursing or stripping, they kept 'forgetting.' Finally, ten minutes before the end of the show, Stanković decided to interrupt the broadcast. As they started undressing, the host covered their behinds with a jacket, deciding that the limits were reached when they 'popped' corks out of their buttocks.

What is Mama ŠČ about?

As per the lyrics, mama bought a tractor, and she'd been loving on a moron. There's mention of armageddon, war, and psychopaths. The sound ŠČ confirms it. According to the band, 'ŠČ' is a universal word that can be used in both positive and negative contexts.

"Blessed is our dictionary in which you can say everything with just one word. Until now, we would say jebiga (Croatian for fuck it), and I believe that ŠČ will soon enter the dictionary", said Prlja and added that they are worried about what will happen now, that they have won because undoubtedly their ŠČ products will also become popular in England, and the United Kingdom is no longer in the European Union.

They added that ŠČ is an old Croatian word, sound, and letter. They also emphasized that the theme of their song is the most current topic and that everyone sings it because they want to remain current. They described 'Mama ŠČ' as a socio-political mirror on several levels, writes Večernji. As they said for N1it is an anti-war song in which they are "sending a message to those who think the planet is their toy and want to control everyone like puppets".

All in all, whether viewed as performance art, social commentary, or just a publicity stunt - it worked. We are endlessly amused by the world discovering Let 3.

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

Saturday, 13 May 2023

Croatian Air Traffic Figures for March 2023 Exceed Those for March 2019

May the 13th, 2023 - Croatian air traffic for the month of March this year has surpassed that recorded back in March 2019, hailed as Croatia's record-breaking year for tourism. It's clear that the coronavirus pandemic is well and truly history as far as international travel is concerned.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Darko Bicak writes, after two years dominated by the global coronavirus pandemic, in which there was a collapse of air traffic, this type of mobility has finally almost completely recovered. This recovery has been evidenced by the recently published data of the National Bureau of Statistics which shows that in March 2023, Croatian air traffic surpassed that seen back during pre-pandemic 2019.

In the third month of 2023, total Croatian air traffic broken down amounted to 374,000 passengers, which is 44.6 percent more than in March 2022, when Croatian air traffic numbers recorded 258,000 passengers. Compared to March 2019, when Croatian air traffic numbers amounted to 346,000 passengers, this year's figure is higher by a very encouraging 8.1 percent.

Zagreb's Franjo Tudjman International Airport achieved the highest passenger traffic of all, recording 263,000 passengers, which is an increase of 34.8 percent compared to March 2022, when 195,000 passengers passed through that airport, and an increase of 13.8 percent compared to March 2019, when 231,000 passengers were recorded there.

The capital's airport is followed by Dubrovnik Airport (Cilipi), with 50,000 passengers recorded, representing an increase of 97.6 percent compared to March 2022, when 25,000 passengers passed through, and a decrease of 13.4 percent compared to March 2019, when traffic amounted to 58,000 recorded passengers.

Split Airport, with 49,000 passengers, recorded an increase of 56.7 percent at the annual level, when traffic amounted to 31 thousand passengers and an increase of 1.9 percent compared to March 2019, when traffic amounted to 48 thousand passengers.

The other six Croatian airports and airstrips are almost entirely seasonal in character, which is very clearly reflected by the minor number of passengers recorded during the off-season. As such, back in March this year, 8,368 passengers were recorded in Zadar, which is twice as many compared to the same period last year. Pula had 2,357 passengers, with a dependent growth of 52 percent. Osijek had 964 passengers, Rijeka 157, Mali Losinj 32 and Brac 9 passengers.

The most significant international passenger traffic was achieved with the airports of Germany - recording a massive 80 thousand passengers - which is 29.3 percent more compared to March 2022 and 23.5 percent less compared to March 2019.

Across Europe, Germany is followed by the airports of the United Kingdom with 32,000 transported passengers, which is 53.5 percent more compared to the same period last year and 103.2 percent more compared to March 2019, and the airports of the Netherlands with 25,000 transported passengers. which is 38 percent more compared to the same period last year and 74.6 percent more compared to March 2019.

The total number of aircraft landings and takeoffs at airports in March 2023 was 5,604, an increase of 12.7 percent compared to March 2022, when the number of landings and takeoffs was 4,974, and 2.5 percent less than on March 2019, when the total number of landings and takeoffs was 5,747.

Total cargo traffic at the airports in March 2023 was 808 tonnes, an increase of 2.4 percent compared to March 2022, when cargo traffic was 789 tonnes, and also an increase of 2.4 percent compared to March in 2019

The number of passengers in Croatian airports is also expected to increase during the month of May, but the exception to that could be Zagreb Airport. This is because on May the 2nd this year, they started work on the runway which will be closed to all traffic at night from 23:00 to 06:25 until May the 31st.

In particular, Ryanair, which has a base in Zagreb, could be in trouble due to this and, due to accumulated daily delays, the last flight to Zagreb is often well after midnight.

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

Saturday, 13 May 2023

Changes Coming as HAC Plans Lucko Traffic Regulations Update

May the 13th, 2023 - HAC has announced that it is set to update Lucko traffic regulations and that Croatia's road users should prepare themselves for quite the change in this regard as everything undergoes optimisation.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, Croatian Motorways (HAC) has announced new Lucko traffic regulations in order to reduce issues with summer congestion, meaning that the number of approach lanes will increase from three to four in the direction of the sea, and ENC usage will be enabled at all entrance lanes.

In the press release issued by Croatian Motorways on the topic, it is stated that owing to Croatian accession to the Schengen area and the border control with neighbouring Slovenia having been abolished, new Lucko traffic regulations need to be introduced as that border crossing, which is no longer there, was the thing which used to slow down the flow of road traffic.

"With the abolition of border controls, an additional increase in the intensity of traffic entering the A1 highway at Lucko is expected. As such, HAC has started to improve the throughput capacity of the Lucko intersection within the framework of the existing dimensions of the motorway. Through these new solutions, the plan is to facilitate the flow of traffic and reduce congestion on the section of the A1 Zagreb - Split - Ploce motorway, especially in the approach to Lucko heading in the direction of the coast.''

In the area of the Lucko intersection, traffic management will be ensured continuously with two traffic lanes from the direction of Slovenia towards the south, instead of the current single traffic lane. This should contribute to the more even distribution of traffic flows in the direction of the coast and, according to the Croatian Motorways, it will reduce the wait to join the traffic lane in the approach to the Lucko zone. In addition to that, the number of lanes in the approach area to the toll booths/gates has been increased from three to four lanes.

The dynamic management of the toll gates will eliminate the situation of intertwining traffic during peak hours, for example when an ENC user is in the far left lane, they will no longer have to look for an ENC lane, but will be able to use any lane to make such a passage. As a result, passing with an ENC device and picking up a card for manual payment will be possible at all entrance toll lanes, which will be opened depending on traffic demand to the south, as well as to the north.

Shorter queues are expected as a result of the upcoming Lucko traffic regulations

Although these measures won't manage to solve all of the problems due to the limited capacity of the Lucko - Bosiljevo section itself, it is expected that the positive effects will be visible through the reduction of the length of the queue along the Zagreb ring road.

It is also expected that the queues of vehicles waiting to pay, which extend to the ring road, will form later on and as such disperse earlier (meaning there will hopefully be a shorter waiting time in the queue). This, as HAC stated, will contribute to increasing traffic safety on the ring road and in the area of the Lucko intersection, and savings in time which would otherwise be lost in traffic jams are also expected.

The aim of the new measures is to optimise the bandwidth of all directions arriving at the Lucko toll station. The new solution is also intended to ensure the safety of all road users, and to reduce time losses for users due to congestion and traffic jams on this very important section of the motorway.

"With adherence to the speed limit and the caution and cooperation of all road users, it's possible to achieve a safe and efficient traffic flow on the section of the motorway from Zagreb to the Bosiljevo intersection, which will make it much easier for people to travel to their desired tourist destinations," the statement from HAC concluded.

For more, check out our news section.

Saturday, 13 May 2023

PM Plenkovic and Government Ministers Receive Death Threats

May the 13th, 2023 - PM Plenkovic and his government ministers faced threats to their lives yesterday. Despite the relatively low threat of terrorism in Croatia when compared to numerous other European countries including the UK and France, the police were quick to intervene.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, according to information which was issued yesterday, the police received a phone call yesterday morning about a threat to murder PM Plenkovic and members of his government. Because of this, an intervention team was sent out and the police procedure was ongoing throughout the day.

Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic commented on the latest report of the Security and Intelligence Agency (SOA) and confirmed that the attempt to establish a paramilitary group had been prevented, and he also revealed that yesterday morning, himself and members of the Croatian Government were once again threatened.

He issued a statement while paying a visit south in Dubrovnik as part of Dubrovnik-Neretva County's day. You can read more about what he had to say and more about what has been going on in the weird world of Croatian politics here.

When asked to comment on the SOA report, Andrej Plenkovic said while in the City of Dubrovnik that there were "two groups that had been very clearly identified, which connected a circle of people who had the shared aim of violently overthrowing the nation's constitutional order."

It is important to note that as touched on above, while Croatia's terrorism risk is very low in comparison to other European countries, the threat is still there and has increased owing to various radicalised fringe groups forming in neighbouring countries such as Bosnia and Herzegovina. The controversial return of some former ISIS/ISIL fighters to their home countries has also heightened the general risk, but it remains incredibly low.

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

Friday, 12 May 2023

A Week in Croatian Politics - Protests, Threats and Expensive Dresses

May the 12th, 2023 - This week in Croatian politics, we've had threats made to Plenkovic and the government, demands from nurses, technicians and other hospital staff for an increase in their wages and better working conditions, broken planes and expensive dresses.

We're kicking off this week in Croatian with a bang as threats were made to the government and the police turned up at Banski dvori

As Index reports, Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said today (May the 12th) that a threat was made to him and members of the government this morning, and added that police officers are now present in front of Banski dvori, according to

"The threat is still present and a police unit is currently standing in front of Banski dvori because this morning there was a threat made against me and members of the government. It happens all the time", Plenkovic said in a statement to the media down in Dubrovnik, where he arrived on the occasion of the Day of Dubrovnik-Neretva County.

"There was a terrorist attack three years ago"

He said the above while commenting on today's annual SOA report, about which he said: "We had discussions at the Committee for National Security given that there was a terrorist attack almost three years ago, it could be the case that someone would want to carry out a terrorist act against the Prime Minister, that is, against me".

A special challenge is the return of ISIL fighters and their families from captivity in Syria to neighbouring countries. SOA pointed out that in some countries of the Western Balkans, Salafi jihadist parajams are still active, and they are led by charismatic religious preachers.

As has been the case over more recent years, the primary terrorist threat in Europe continues to be radicalised individuals inspired by jihadist ideology. These are independent attackers, so-called lone wolves, whose actions are unpredictable. They typically have no direct contact with any terrorist organisations, but are inspired by calls from terrorist organisations to commit a terrorist act, SOA revealed.

"Extremism in Croatia has no foothold or public support"

Despite the attack on St. Mark's Square back in 2020, Croatia is still a society in which extremism on any basis - religious, ideological or national - doesn't have a significant foothold, nor does it have public support, and thus no strength or potential to destabilise national security, the SOA report stated.

However, as they pointed out, SOA has detected attempts by individuals with extremist and militant attitudes to properly organise their followers, with the intention of implementing military training and the procurement of weapons, all with the ultimate goal of overthrowing the democratic constitutional order.

"That young man carried out the shooting in 2020 because of the atmosphere in which he grew up. Someone gave him a weapon, someone taught him to shoot and someone provoked in him that exact moment, which is the most important factor. We were lucky that he unfortunately didn't succeed in carrying out his intentions,'' the PM said.

What did SOA announce today in its annual report?

As far as terrorism in Croatia is concerned, SOA estimated in their annual report published today that the threat of organised attacks by terrorist groups here in Croatia is still considered low, but the possibility of a terrorist attack being carried out, primarily by independent attackers, can never be entirely ruled out.

President Zoran Milanovic meets with Bosnia and Herzegovina's Presidency Member Denis Becirovic

Zoran Milanovic recently met with Member of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Denis Becirovic in Zagreb. The Bosniak member of the BiH presidency, Denis Becirovic, has been officially visiting Croatia, during which he will also meet with Plenkovic.

After the bilateral meeting of Milanovic and Becirovic with their accompanying delegations was held, statements to the media followed.

"I'm pleased that after a long break, we're now having talks at the highest level. The talks were in Croatia's interest because I represent Croatia, and the interest of this country is for Bosnia and Herzegovina to be spatially stable and for it to become an EU member state. I give my special support to the integrity of Bosnia and Herzegovina,'' said Milanovic.

"It's time to relax and improve our relations and to build bridges of friendship," said Becirovic, adding that the two countries generally cooperate with each other very well and that talks must be focused on solving any issues that do remain between the two neighbouring nations.

"Dodik is a security threat, he must be stopped''

Becirovic called the controversial Dodik a security threat. "He's a security threat, he must be stopped in his politics, it's time for everyone to understand that," he said and added that he believes better days are ahead in the cooperation between Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. This was followed by questions from journalists. The first question was about the gas pipeline.

"I have no problem supporting all of the development projects, and some people must understand that it's in their interest that we regulate that an acceptable way and in the way that the EU asks of us. There are clear directives about this so we do need to talk about it. A policy of blackmail isn't a policy that can bring good," said Becirovic.

Spain's Queen Letizia turned heads with a dress which cost almost 800 euros during her recent visit to Zagreb

Queen Letizia arrived in Zagreb recently on the occasion of the Summit of spouses of European leaders on the prevention of childhood obesity. She was hosted by Sanja Music Milanovic, the wife of Zoran Milanovic.

Queen Letizia, often referred to as one of best-dressed women in the world, wore a sky blue dress made by the Spanish designer Maria Barragan (which totalled 775 euros), which she combined with snake pattern heels from the Carolina Herrera brand. According to the Spanish media, she also wore diamond earrings.

Sanja Music Milanovic welcomed her in a purple suit with a modern cut, which she combined with black heels.

One of the best dressed women in the world arrives in Zagreb

As noted above, Queen Letizia is considered one of the greatest fashion icons in the entire world. Vanity Fair ranked her in the top ten best-dressed women on Earth, and many foreign media portals and papers regularly write about her elegant style, but also her simple and affordable fashion choices (we're not sure 800 euro dresses and diamond earrings are exactly affordable, but there we go). Otherwise, she can often be seen wearing clothes from Zara, a popular Spanish brand which has shops and is popular across Europe.

Minister Gordan Grlic-Radman attended the coronation of King Charles III in London, and not Zoran Milanovic

A truly historic event took place recently, with the coronation of King Charles III following seventy long years of his mother's reign as queen. Queen Elizabeth sadly passed away back in September 2022, and since then, preparations have been underway in Britain for the crowning of her son. 

As statesmen and women of the world descended on the British capital for the coronation, there was no sight of President Zoran Milanovic, with Gordan Grlic-Radman attending the historic event instead. Many raised their eyebrows when the news broke that President Zoran Milanovic and his wife weren't going to attend the coronation of King Charles III, but there were no reasons within British or Croatian politics for it. The plane that was going to be used to transport to pair to London simply broke. Instead, Foreign and European Affairs Minister Gordan Grlic-Radman travelled using a commercial plane.

As was soon learned from the Croatian Government, the Directorate for the Use of Official Aircraft informed the Office of the President of the Republic of Croatia about the failure of the official aircraft during a technical flight. It was then stated from the government that instead of President Milanovic, Gordan Grlic-Radman would head over to London on a regular commercial flight.

It was explained that their pilots performed a technical flight to test one of the aircraft's systems, noting that the test was failed and the plane was returned to the airport. The replacement part was then ordered from the manufacturer. President Milanovic decided to remain at home and swapped London for the Istrian city of Pula, which was celebrating its City Day.

The previously announced protest of healthcare professionals who are not doctors and hospital employees took place, with their wages, conditions, and Health Minister Vili Beros in their sights

Around 1000 nurses, technicians and non-medical staff from all parts of Croatia protested on Thursday at Zrinjevac (Zagreb), demanding higher wages and better working conditions, with the message that they've been devalued and cannot continue to sit twiddling their thumbs and waiting for announced changes in 2024.

"The new coefficients and pay grades will be applied only from February 2024, we can't wait until then," said Stjepan Topolnjak, president of the Independent Union of Health and Social Welfare.

At the protest, which lasted about an hour and a half, he warned that cleaners, laundry workers and auxiliary workers work for minimum wage, and nurses with a secondary vocational education for only 50 euros above the minimum wage.

"A nurse in primary care has a salary of 700 euros, and in hospitals that goes up to 900 euros. Is that enough of a salary for the work they do?!" asked Topolnjak, greeted by shouts from protesters: "We're healthcare too!" "Give us back our rights and our dignity!", "Saving on nurses is like saving on the foundations of a house, one day everything will collapse!" and "Nurses deserve more!!

"The system does not need ministers, but it does need workers"

The president of the Croatian Professional Union of Nurses and Technicians, Brankica Grguric, told Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic, who has thus far refused to accept them, that they don't need him, adding that his attitude towards them is shameful.

"The system does not need ministers, but it does need workers, cooks, midwives, nurses and physiotherapists," said Grguric.

The president of the Croatian Chamber of Nurses, Mario Gazic, came out to provide support with the message that the protest at Zrinjevac should only be the beginning of further actions.

"Nurses and non-medical staff deserve the same respect as doctors get"

The president of the Association of Independent Trade Unions of Croatia, Mladen Novosel, also spoke at the protest, saying that nurses and other staff deserve the same respect as the prime minister and the health minister showed to doctors.

"They were put in a more favourable position compared to you," Novosel pointed out to the protesters present.

The president of the Independent Croatian Trade Unions (NHS) Kresimir Sever warned that Croatian healthcare is in an unwell state, and that the cure is in the hands of the prime minister and Vili Beros.

"You were forced out onto the steets to protest because you aren't being respected equally, one group is accepted and the other is invited to collective bargaining," said Sever.

The protestors were also supported by Zeljko Stipic from the Preporod educational union and Sanja Sprem, the president of the Croatian Teachers' Union.

Trade unionists have claimed that the prime minister had opened a "Pandora's box" by increasing doctors' salaries but choosing to ignore others.

''This is the beginning of a story that will succeed,'' said Stipic, while Anica Prasnjak from the Nurses' Union said that "there is no giving up".

Prasnjak also warned that starting on May the 25th, she will begin preparations for a "serious strike" if the government and actors in Croatian politics continue to willfully ignore their demands.


For more on Croatian politics, make sure to keep up with our dedicated section. A dedicated Week in Croatian Politics article is also published every Friday.

Thursday, 11 May 2023

Overbuilding a Threat to the Green Oasis of Famous Croatian Tourist Area

May 12, 2023 - Dozens of construction sites have sprung up in the area of Opatija, with overbuilding threatening to devastate the environment of this Croatian tourist area. Although the spatial planning documentation was changed in 2021, in the meantime, 250 supplemental requests from investors arrived.

The city does not have the authority to prevent concreting, so it called on state services to support their fight against devastation, writes HRT / Poslovni.

There are many large construction sites in Opatija, and in one of them, in less than a year, a green oasis where locals used to pick asparagus, and tourists enjoyed walking and enjoying the view was devastated.

"The worst of all is the road that they cut in half and moved the concrete part to private land, and it is the only approach to the houses," says Nikola Turina from Opatija.

This was made possible by vague and unclear legal provisions and the insufficient presence of inspections, which further encourages individual investors, so scenes like this are common, they claim in the city of Opatija. Despite the moratorium on rough construction works from June 1st to September 15th, the noise of internal construction works will not bypass Opatija this tourist season either.

"Imagine what it's like for people who own apartments; how do they explain to their guests that it takes 24 hours for a decision or ban to take effect. What we ask all the time is - if there are not enough inspectors, give us the authority to do something substantial," said Filip Vlah, head of the municipal system of the City of Opatija.

Illegal Construction

They appeal to state inspections to become more involved in stopping unwanted phenomena in the area. They are asking the Government to amend the legislation enabling local self-government units to play a more active role in the fight against apartment building.

"With the new spatial plan, we have protected the area under the new road. There is no more construction, and reconstruction can be done in the existing dimensions, but I don't know how many more buildings will spring up because the legislature allowed it. We complained to the institutions that reject us, and everything ends up at the top of the relevant ministry", says the mayor of Opatija, Fernando Kirigin.

That is why Opatija decided to initiate a new procedure for amending the spatial planning documentation to reduce the construction area and make it impossible where there is no adequate infrastructure. Acceptable architectural solutions for this city, which is the cradle of Croatian tourism, will also be defined.

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

Thursday, 11 May 2023

Animal Abuse and Mistreatment in Croatia to be Fined with Higher Amounts

May 12, 2023 - The amendments to the Law on Public Order and Peace Offenses, which entered into force on Thursday, will ensure that animal abuse is punished with fines from two hundred to one thousand euros instead of the previous twenty to one hundred euros, according to a press release from the Croatian Friends of Animals association.

As the association explained, reports Index, with these legal changes, a fine of two hundred to one thousand euros will be imposed on a person who "unsupervised and carelessly keeps animals that can injure or endanger citizens or who abuses animals in a public place or mistreats them in another way".

"Higher penalties are more likely to have a preventive effect"

Small and often symbolic amounts of fines do not significantly help deter individuals from committing misdemeanors to the detriment of animals, or to the detriment of people. Higher penalties are certainly more likely to have a preventive effect, which is especially important because animal abusers often also become human abusers, say the Croatian Friends of Animals.

According to the provision of the Law on Public Order and Peace Offenses, citizens are urged to immediately call the police when they witness the abuse or mistreatment of animals in a public place, and the police are the only ones with the authority to stop mistreatment of animals and take measures to sanction the violators, they point out in the press release.

They also note that other legal regulations are not applicable in such situations. "It is great that such situations can be reported under the Law on Public Order and Peace Offenses, and the higher penalties prescribed should deter potential perpetrators from both committing and repeating the offence," further point out the Croatian Friends of Animals.

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

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