Prime Minister Andrej Plenković was in Split on Saturday attending celebrations marking the 29th anniversary of the founding of his party, the HDZ, in that city. The prime minister was asked to comment on the process of recalling Croatia's Ambassador to Bosnia and Herzegovina, who was in Banja Luka during celebrations marking the unconstitutional Republic of Srpska Day.
Croatia's Ambassador to Bosnia and Herzegovina Ivan Del Vechio claims he was only in Banja Luka to hold a previously scheduled meeting with Bosnian Serb leader Milorad Dodik. Prime Minister Andrej Plenković however, feels that the experienced diplomat should have known better.
"We were not informed that the Croatian ambassador to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Mr Del Vechio, would be attending the event. In our opinion, even if he did have a meeting scheduled that was unrelated to these events, he should have consulted with Zagreb. Given his experience, he should not have been there on that day. Especially considering the fact that this was his 5th opportunity to go there on that day if memory serves, and he never once went until now. I find it a little unusual that at the very end of his mandate and his career he put himself in this situation, for which he has been recalled to Zagreb for consultations and we will be naming a new ambassador to Bosnia and Herzegovina shortly," the PM said.
The Prime Minister also asked to comment on the decision of Dragan Čović, the chairman of the HDZ in Bosnia and Herzegovina, to attend the event in Banja Luka. "The HDZ Bosnia and Herzegovina is independent of the HDZ in Croatia, and Mr Čović and the leadership of the HDZ BiH adopt their own decisions and make their own assessments on individual issues. As far as his attendance in Banja Luka, this was not the first time, he has been there a number of times in recent years, and I will let Mr Čović and the HDZ BiH comment on that issue."