The ultimatum expires at 16:00 today.
The ultimatum given by Homeland War veteran Petar Janjić Tromblon to Prime Minister Andrej Plenković regarding the border dispute with Slovenia will expire at 16:00 this afternoon. Janjić expects the government to solve the dispute in the Bay of Piran, or says he will do it himself, together with other war veterans, reports Index.hr on January 8, 2018.
The ultimatum was issued last Wednesday, with veterans threatening to send boats to the bay if the government did not start talks with Slovenia and did not solve the problems for Croatian fishermen in the area. Janjić’s letter to Prime Minister Plenković was published on an extreme rightwing website. At the time, he gave the Prime Minister a 72-hour deadline to solve the problem, but the deadline was extended on Friday. “I have a lot of Slovenian friends with whom I am in contact. They do not want this dangerous situation to continue. We have now made the decision to wait a bit because we have to respect the decision of the Croatian fishermen. Our task is to come there and warn the government to speed up the process in the interests of fishermen and of tourism,” explained Janjić on Friday.
Speaking for Index.hr, Janjić explained his plans if Plenković did not meet the veterans’ demands. “You will know everything later today; things are going as planned. I will give the information to the website which was first to publish this story. I have given them the deadline, but, as far as I can see, the gentlemen have not made any contact with the Slovenian government. I have created a major organisation, larger than I originally planned. I will not give up on my request, no way,” said Janjić, adding that everything would be known today at 16:00.
According to the ultimatum, Janjić would take about a hundred boats, and ships loaded with war veterans and sail to the Bay of Piran, and “protect the Croatian maritime state border with Slovenia from illegal incursions by foreign police into Croatian territorial waters.” In his ultimatum, Janjić states that, if the Prime Minister did not meet his demands, he would “ensure fishing for Croatian fishermen from Istria so they can feed their families.” “I can bring one hundred boats from the Danube, the Sava and the Drava rivers. I’d like to see who will stop us, who will punish us, and whether any Slovenian boats will enter Croatian waters,” said Janjić.
HDZ, who used to praise veterans’ demands during their months-long protest against then SDP government in 2015, has now remained mostly silent. “These issues can be solved by an agreement between the two sides; one side cannot solve this problem. We have to be clever; politics is guided by reason, not by the the heart. I understand those who are irritated, but we should be reasonable. It isn’t proper for someone to pressure the Croatian government. The government is very much concerned with Croatian national interests and will protect Croatian fishermen and citizens,” said Speaker of Parliament Gordan Jandroković.
Prime Minister Plenković has not yet commented on the threats, but he did comment on the idea of Member of European Parliament Ruža Tomašić that the navy should be sent to the Bay of Piran. “We will not fight wars with Slovenians. Let’s be realistic,” said Plenković.
In his letter, Janjić also mentioned the current Veterans’ Affairs Minister Tomo Medved, who used to incite war veterans’ aggression when he used them to bring HDZ to power. “Do not use Minister Medved as a buffer zone in this issue, because he shares our opinion,” wrote Janjić to Plenković.
The Ministry said that Janjić’s proposal was unacceptable. “The Veterans Affairs Ministry has full confidence in the Prime Minister who is solving the open border issue with Slovenia in a rational and peaceful manner, in accordance with international law and by taking Croatia’s interests into account,” said the Ministry in a rather strange statement confirming that it has confidence in the Prime Minister.
Translated from Index.hr.