PM: Decision on transfer of proceedings against Croatian nationals up to Greece

NEWS 22.08.202313:05 0 komentara

A decision on whether to transfer criminal proceedings against Croatian football supporters to Croatia is up to Greek authorities but Croatia is ready for such a scenario, Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said in Athens on Tuesday.

“That is up to the Greek authorities. If they express an interest in transferring the proceedings to us, we are ready for it,” Plenkovic told Croatian reporters after meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Plenkovic noted that Croatian authorities had done everything they could within their powers.

Justice Minister Ivan Malenica, who is accompanying Plenkovic on his visit to Greece, said that Greece has requested data from criminal records for all 102 Croatians detained in Greece over involvement in fan violence in Athens on 8 August, in which a Greek national was killed.

Malenica said that at bilateral meetings with Greek politicians there was no talk of Croatian football supporters who are believed to have arrived in Greece but have not been arrested.

Asked why warrants for their arrest have not been issued yet, he said that it is a question for Greek authorities and the Greek ministry of the interior.

After 29-year-old Michalis Katsouris was killed in clashes between AEK and Dinamo supporters ahead of a UEFA Champions League qualifying match in Athens on 8 August, 102 Dinamo supporters, who call themselves Bad Blue Boys, were arrested and are waiting for the completion of the investigation in prisons across Greece.

PM Plenkovic and Croatian ministers discussed the case with their Greek counterparts in Athens over the past two days.

Greek Foreign Minister Giorgos Gerapetritis on Tuesday met for talks with his Croatian counterpart Gordan Grlic-Radman, and they both gave brief statements for the press afterwards.

Grlic-Radman said they discussed the football fan violence, reiterating some of Croatia’s demands to Greek authorities, such as that the detained Croatian nationals be guaranteed security in prisons and a speedy, efficient and fair trial.

Grlic-Radman said that there were no outstanding issues between Croatia and Greece and that bilateral trade was constantly on the rise. The two ministers discussed areas of common interest such as IT, energy, wood-processing industry, connectivity and the importance of establishing a flight service.

Grlic-Radman and Justice Minister Malenica on Monday visited the Croatians detained in Greek prisons.

Grlic-Radman visited eight Croatian supporters in Korydallos, the biggest Greek prison, while Malenica visited seven Croatians detained in Chalkida.

Also in the Croatian delegation was Security-Intelligence Agency (SOA) chief Daniel Markic, who told reporters that the Croatian nationals held in custody in Greece were unaware of the gravity of their charges but stressed that Greek and Croatian officials were discussing the case so that it could be resolved as soon as possible.

“The goal is to build trust. Neither is Croatia a fascist country nor is Greece a banal country. Those are two functional states, two EU and NATO members, and we have to cooperate,” said Markic.

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