President Milanović: Croatia Has a Way to Obtain for Croats in Bosnia and Herzegovina What Belongs to Them

01. October 2020.

The President of the Republic Zoran Milanović participated in a commemoration marking the 78th anniversary of the Italian-Chetnik massacre of the residents of Gata and outlying Poljice villages in the Omiš hinterland, after which he spoke to reporters and commented on the statement by Bakir Izetbegović, who declined the President’s invitation to meet with him, saying that the hierarchy should be respected.

“I respect Bosnia and Herzegovina, but Mr. Izetbegović is being inconsistent because he met with the Croatian Prime Minister, who also received Dodik. I do not mind this and I am glad that he met with the Prime Minister. This is insincere, and it will not end well. Croatia has a way to peacefully yet persistently and, if you will, brazenly, obtain for one people in Bosnia and Herzegovina what simply belongs to it,” said President Milanović, adding that Bosnia and Herzegovina has been stagnating. “When someone tells me that Bosnia and Herzegovina will enter NATO – I have a problem with accession to NATO by a country that is so out of joint,” said the President.

President Milanović spoke about Dalija Orešković and the ombudswoman for gender equality Višnja Ljubičić. “That is unfair. If you enter the ring, do not take a knife with you. Play fair and expect and be ready to be treated the way you treat others. Now, since you asked, I will read something to you, to show you what kind of language was used,” said the President, who then read a sentence in which Dalija Orešković said the following about the then-President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović: “What is her primary role? To ensure that the state authorities are coordinated in their actions? I don’t know if it’s because of the false eyelashes or because she is not capable of performing her function, but it seems to me that her view of the actual situation in the country is somewhat blurred.”

After reading Dalija Orešković’s statement, President Milanović said: “When I used the word keener, not big mouth and self-pleasing, then that adjective certainly carries weight. There are no professional male keeners, but there are fiddlers.”

“Mourning women are insincere, they do what they do because they are expected to do it – I was thinking just that and I am glad that the ombudswoman for gender equality appeared … what’s her name?” President Milanović then asked reporters – who could not tell him or could not remember her name. “There are people who hold very important public posts, who were elected by the Croatian Parliament, but whose names both you and me, as the President of the Republic, cannot immediately recall. Her name is Višnja Ljubičić. Do you know since when she has been in that post? She was elected at the end of October 2011. She was elected to the post a few weeks after I became Prime Minister. She has been doing her job so intensively for eight years that I really do not know her name. I have not heard of this lady. In December 2019, she was appointed to another eight years in office, at your expense. She was again elected somehow. Her job is to react in situations such as the latest one. I am telling her that I did not insult anyone. But people coming to a wrestling match with a knife cannot not expect a response in kind, regardless of whether they are women or men. It’s all the same. Do you want to be treated as an Amazon? Be prepared for that,” said President Milanović.

“I’m drawing attention to how things are done in civilized countries, and then I guess I have the right to go far by a few steps, just to show you what this is all about. There are people who do their job conveniently, who are not fair,” the President noted.

President Milanović commented on the visit of U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Croatia: “He’s coming to try and sell American planes. I’m saying this, as the one who said that American goods should be a priority. He’s coming now when the offers have practically been opened. In my opinion, nobody should talk to them about that. This is some kind of pressure. In ideal circumstances, the U.S. offer would be a priority but in this case the decision will be political,” the President emphasized, adding that he is against considering offers from non-NATO countries.

Questioned by reporters whether the topic of the 5G Internet network would be discussed at the meeting in Dubrovnik, since the U.S. is worried about the spread of China’s influence and Huawei’s participation in the building of 5G Internet networks in the world, President Milanović said: “This is our country, our rules apply here.”