Veterans Minister Tomo Medved/ A sign in Slunj/Soldiers lighting candles in memory of those that gave their lives (Photo collage: HRT/Nikola Čutuk/Edina Žuko/PIXSELL) Veterans Minister Tomo Medved/ A sign in Slunj/Soldiers lighting candles in memory of those that gave their lives (Photo collage: HRT/Nikola Čutuk/Edina Žuko/PIXSELL)

Attending celebrations in Slunj was Veterans Minister Tomo Medved, who took part in liberation of the town in 1995 as a member of the 1st Tiger's Guards Brigade.

“The five-year wait to return to their homes was ended by operation Storm,” said Deputy Prime Minister and Medved, recalling the details of the military operation that liberated Slunj.

“Units from the 1st Guards Brigade, from the direction of the south from Plitvice, meaning after severing the so called Serb Krajina self-proclaimed state, entered into the city of Slunj, together with them units from the 14th Home Guard Regiment also entered, meaning locals who had been waiting 5 years to return to their homes,” said Medved.

“In this city freedom was paid for at an enormous human price,” recalled the Veterans Minister.

“When we talk about the City of Slunj's Day, we must remember the suffering of Slunj in 1991 and the brutal aggression behind the greater Serbian ideology that demonstrated all of its severity in this part of Croatia, and the sacrifice of 352 people, who gave their lives for the freedom we have today, is was a huge sacrifice,” said Medved.

Slunj Mayor Jure Katić, on the other hand, expressed hope that - despite demographic facts - fewer and fewer residents will decide to leave the city.

“All of us left here, for four years we didn't return, in that time period 50% of the population did not return, so in four years our population was reduced by 50%. Much is being invested and I hope these projects that are being planned and realized now will contribute, not only to the city, but to all of our people, all people living in the city and surrounding places, so that people may be employed here. I hope it will be so,” said Katić.

The Mayor said that places that do not even have drinking water will not have to wait long to solve this basic problem.

Source: HRT