Sunday

30th Apr 2017

Croatia government close to implosion

Croatia's deputy prime minister Tomislav Karamarko has filed a no-confidence motion against the prime minister, pushing the coalition government a step closer to collapse.

"This government is not functional. We can pursue reforms only with new people. There is still time for new, homogenous and reshuffled government," said Karamarko, who leads the largest coalition party HDZ.

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

  • The vote on the motion is expected at the end of next week (Photo: Mario Fajt)

The party was collecting signatures for the motion on Tuesday (7 June), with a vote expected at the end of next week.

Prime minister Tihomir Oreskovic, a political novice who has spent most of his life in Canada, was drafted in because the main parties could not agree a candidate.

However, HDZ's coalition partner Most said it would support a no-confidence motion against Karamarko brought by the opposition SDP.

Karamarko is currently caught up in a scandal over oil money. His wife has business ties to a firm lobbying for Hungarian oil company Mol, which is in dispute with the Croatian government.

Last week, Oreskovic urged both Karamarko and Most leader Bozo Petrov, also a deputy PM, to resign.

The SDP, the second largest party, have indicated that they will support the motion against Oreskovic, meaning it is likely to pass. They hope the coalition's collapse will lead to new elections.

But Karamarko wants to broker a new government, saying Croatia does not have time for a vote.

If a prime minister-designate fails to gather the support of at least 76 MPs in the 151-seat parliament and form a cabinet within 30 days, there would have to call snap election.

Since it came to power in January, the government has fired critical journalists from public service channels and cut off funds for independent cultural bodies.

It has alienated the Jewish and Serbian minorities by installing a culture minister accused of glorifying Croatia's World War II leaders, who were allied to the Nazis and carried out massacres.

Last week, 25,000 teachers protested in Zagreb against the government's efforts to infuse the curriculum with nationalist propaganda.

Opinion

Croatia joins EU's illiberal democracy club

Croatia's new PM is a political nobody. He's controlled by men who are about as pro-European as Kaczynski in Poland or Orban in Hungary and the EU should be worried.

Same old scandals drag down Croatia's government

Scandals over oil money and World War II history, attacks on democratic standards risk unseating Croatia's government in a confidence vote just five months after it took office.

EPP group frustrated with Orban

Orban's ruling Fidesz party is getting too much to handle for the EPP group, as they are once again forced to defend the Hungarian premier's controversial actions.

Analysis

Orban set to face down EU threats

The European Commission and Parliament are to debate Hungary's slide into illiberal democracy. But the bloc continues to think that Hungarian leader Viktor Orban is not a systemic threat.

France still anxious over possibility of Le Pen win

Despite opinion polls that place centrist Macron well ahead of the far-right leader Le Pen in the 7 May presidential run-off, doubts are emerging about his capacity to unite the French people around his candidacy.

News in Brief

  1. Vote of no confidence prepared against Spanish PM
  2. Syria to buy Russian anti-missile system
  3. Germany seeks partial burka ban
  4. Libya has no plan to stop migration flows
  5. EU has no evidence of NGO-smuggler collusion in Libya
  6. Poland gets 'final warning' on logging in ancient forest
  7. Commission gives Italy final warning on air pollution
  8. Romania and Slovenia taken to court over environment policies

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. European Healthy Lifestyle AllianceCharlotte Hornets' Nicolas Batum Tells Kids to "Eat Well, Drink Well, Move!"
  2. ECR GroupSyed Kamall: We Need a New, More Honest Relationship With Turkey
  3. Counter BalanceParliament Sends Strong Signal to the EIB: Time to Act on Climate Change
  4. ACCARisks and Opportunities of Blockchain and Shared Ledgers Technologies in Financial Services
  5. UNICEFRace Against Time to Save Millions of Lives in Yemen
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersDeveloping Independent Russian-Language Media in the Baltic Countries
  7. Swedish EnterprisesReform of the European Electricity Market: Lessons from the Nordics, Brussels 2 May
  8. Malta EU 2017Green Light Given for New EU Regulation to Bolster External Border Checks
  9. Counter BalanceCall for EU Commission to Withdraw Support of Trans-Adriatic Pipeline
  10. ACCAEconomic Confidence at Highest Since 2015
  11. European Federation of Allergy and Airways60%-90% of Your Life Is Spent Indoors. How Does Poor Indoor Air Quality Affect You?
  12. European Gaming and Betting AssociationCJEU Confirms Obligation for a Transparent Licensing Process

Latest News

  1. EU boasts unity on Brexit talks
  2. May’s election juggernaut
  3. EPP scolds Orban over university and NGO laws
  4. Oxford-Studie besorgt über 'Schrott' News in Frankreich
  5. Alte Freundschaft zwischen Le Pen und Putin
  6. EP chief faces questions after homophobic 'summit'
  7. EU signals Northern Ireland could join if united with Ireland
  8. One year later: EU right to open internet still virtual