10th Croatian Parliament dissolved; controversial Lex AP passed

ENGLISH 14.03.202413:42 0 komentara
Patrik Macek/PIXSELL

After almost four years, the 10th Croatian parliament was dissolved on Thursday with a unanimous decision of 143 votes in favour of dissolving parliament. It had previously adopted the amendments, known as Lex AP.

Two new criminal offences were introduced in the amended Criminal Code: Femicide and leaking information during investigations.

The amendments, known as Lex AP, were adopted with 77 votes in favour, 60 against and one abstention.

The basic intention of the amendments to the Criminal Code, the Criminal Procedure Act and the Domestic Violence Protection Act is to further prevent violence against women. Therefore, in addition to gender-specific violence against women, the criminal offence of femicide will also be introduced.

As far as the criminalisation of the unauthorised disclosure of information from investigations is concerned, the law excludes criminalisation if the information is disclosed in the public interest, for the protection of victims and in the interests of defence. Possible offenders include judicial officers or employees, police officers, defendants, lawyers and witnesses. The law stipulates that journalists may not commit, support or instigate criminal offences.

“European Parliament voted in favour of a regulation that differs from the amended Criminal Code”

Before the vote, the leader of the opposition party SDP, Pedja Grbin, said that these changes were not wanted by journalists, whistleblowers and all those who want to fight crime. “This law serves to cover up theft and corruption with a smokescreen”

Grbin “constantly lies and thinks that by repeating himself he can convince citizens of something that is not true,” said Zeljko Reiner from the ruling HDZ, adding that the law explicitly states that no one will take action against journalists and the media.

A law that explicitly states that journalists and whistleblowers will not be prosecuted and that it will protect the public interest is a law that basically does the opposite, said Marija Selak Raspudic (Most party).

This law protects constitutional rights, the right to a fair trial, the presumption of innocence, journalists and the public interest, said Nikola Mazar (HDZ).

Anka Mrak Taritas (GLAS party) said that the HDZ MPs in the European Parliament voted in favour of a regulation that differs from the amended Criminal Code.

The elections will take place in April or May

Katarina Peovic (Radnicka fronta party) said that this law “puts a plaster on the mouth of journalists” and added: “Death to fascism, freedom to the people.”

“Death to fascism and death to communism,” said Dario Hrebak from the ruling majority party HSLS.

Dalija Oreskovic (SsiP party) said that Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic had deceived all women by covering up the crime of leaking information from the investigation under the guise of murdering women.

The upcoming parliamentary election, she said, “will lead to the question of whether AP, the prime minister… will remain free or whether the rest of us will remain free.”

Domagoj Hajdukovic (SDP party) said that any attempt to restrict freedoms is bad and that the amended Criminal Code is bad for citizens, journalists and democracy.

The exact date for the election of the new, 11th parliament, which will take place in April or May, will be set by President Zoran Milanovic.

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