Croatian conservatives campaigning for a change in election laws submitted enough signatures to parliament to call a referendum on reducing the legislative rights of ethnic minority groups, conservative group said on Wednesday. The group said the proposal called for reducing the number of lawmakers in parliament from 150 to a maximum 120. It also would reduce the number of MPs representing minorities and ban them from voting on crucial issues, such as government formation and budget. A vote may be held in September or October, the group said.
Articles about voting issues in the Republic of Croatia.
A far-right group campaigning for a change in Croatian election laws said Thursday it has collected enough signatures to call a nationwide referendum that could curb significantly the rights of ethnic minorities. The “People Decide” group said it has collected nearly 400,000 signatures for a vote on a proposal to reduce the number of lawmakers in Croatia’s parliament from 150 to a maximum 120, curb the number of MPs representing ethnic minorities and ban them from voting on crucial issues such as forming Croatia’s government and the national budget.
Croatia’s conservatives were poised to remain in power after winning a snap election but will have to begin coalition talks to form a government after falling short of a majority. The close result does little to dispel political uncertainty in the EU’s newest member but the new conservative leader – now likely to be prime minister – has signalled a shift towards the centre after a lurch to the right. The conservative HDZ won 61 seats while its centre-left opposition rivals, the Social Democrats (SDP), had 54, according to results from nearly all polling stations. Slovenia and Croatia ban transit of refugees to other European countries “I’m certain that we are the party that will have the privilege of forming the next stable Croatian government,” HDZ’s new moderate leader, Andrej Plenkovic, told supporters early on Monday.
Croatia goes to the polls in snap parliamentary elections on Sunday – just 10 months after the last vote produced a parliament unable to forge a sustainable governing coalition – with little hope that the outcome will be any different this time. Pollsters predict that neither of the two main parties which have governed Croatia since it emerged from the former Yugoslavia 25 years ago – the conservative Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) and the Social Democratic Party (SDP) – will score a decisive win. “It is certain that the election result will be tight and it is totally certain that neither of the big blocs will have enough to form a government alone,” political analyst Davor Gjenero told dpa.
Parties competing in in Croatia’s parliamentary election campaign are making good use of Smartphone apps and social networks advertising to get the votes out. With elections set for Sunday, some parties, like the leading centre-right Croatian Democratic Union, HDZ, have made a point of motivating voters, especially younger ones, through apps. HDZ’s app “Credible” – also their keyword for the whole campaign – enables users to watch a short video with the new party president Andrej Plenkovic.The phone’s camera back has only to be pointed towards billboards, photos, newspapers or screens showing Plenkovic’s official campaign posters. “Dear young people, we often encounter each other all over Croatia and communicate through social networks,” he says in the video.
Croatia will hold a snap election on Sept. 11, President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic said in a statement on Saturday, following the fall of the government after a vote of no-confidence last month. Prime Minister Tihomir Oreskovic’s five month old center-right coalition government collapsed as a result of a split between the conservative HDZ party and its junior reformist partner, Most (“Bridge”). According to recent opinion polls, the HDZ is trailing the main opposition party, the Social Democrats (SDP), by 10 percentage points, although none of the biggest parties is likely to win an outright majority and a hung parliament is a distinct possibility.
Croatian lawmakers voted Monday to dissolve Parliament, paving the way for early elections after the government fell in a no-confidence vote last week. The vote was 137 in favor of dissolving Parliament, two against and one abstention. Prime Minister Tihomir Oreskovic and his government fell on Thursday after weeks of political deadlock that has stalled much-needed economic reform in the newest European Union member state. Croatia joined the EU in 2013 after fighting a war for independence from Yugoslavia in the 1990s. The ruling right-wing Croatian Democratic Union, which brought Oreskovic to power in January but later turned against him, wanted to form a new government with a new prime minister. Opposition parties, however, collected enough votes in the parliament for the dissolution and the holding of early elections.
Croatia’s ruling coalition lurched toward collapse after its biggest party initiated a no-confidence vote against technocrat Prime Minister Tihomir Oreskovic, threatening a drive to retool the economy and raising the prospect of early elections. Facing dismissal himself in a parliamentary no-confidence vote backed by both the opposition and his ruling partners, Deputy Premier Tomislav Karamarko mounted a counterattack Tuesday, with his Croatian Democratic Union filing for a similar vote against Oreskovic. The measure, which the opposition Social Democrats said they may help push through, can take place on June 15 at the earliest and will bring down the youngest European Union state’s four-month-old government if the premier is defeated. “Considering that the current political groups can’t seem to find a way out of the turmoil, the most efficient and most honest outcome for the country would be snap elections,” Nenad Zakosek, political science professor at the University of Zagreb, said by phone.
Croatia’s parliament elected a speaker on Monday, unblocking a seven-week legislative stalemate and paving the way for lawmakers to approve a new government following inconclusive elections. Lawmakers elected Zeljko Reiner, a member of the Croatian Democratic Union, as head of parliament after his party agreed to form a ruling coalition with the Bridge party that came in third in the Nov. 8 general ballot. The two have proposed Tihomir Oreskovic, a non-partisan pharmaceutical executive who grew up in Canada, as premier. His appointment ended a deadlock in which the proposed coalition partners and the ruling Social Democrats wrangled over who would lead the government and lead a recovery from a six-year recession.
Croatia moved closer to holding a new election on Thursday when parliament convened for the first time after an inconclusive vote on Nov. 8 and its speaker-elect turned down the job after failing to win cross-party support. President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic held an unsuccessful first round of talks last week on forming a coalition cabinet as the minority party that holds the balance of power could not decide which party to back. She set the next round for Dec. 7. The opposition conservative HDZ party won 59 seats in the 151-seat parliament, three seats more than the incumbent Social Democrats-led centre-left coalition. Reformist newcomers “Most”, Croatian for “bridge”, has 19 seats. Whoever wins the support of at least 76 deputies will become prime-minister designate.