19:01 / 19.04.2022.

Author: Domagoj Ferenčić

Government says initiative to pardon Perković and Mustač is political

Deputy PM and Veterans' Affairs Minister Tomo Medved

Deputy PM and Veterans' Affairs Minister Tomo Medved

Foto: Sanjin Strukic / PIXSELL

Reactions to the initiative by a group of Croatian Generals calling on President Zoran Milanović to pardon former Yugoslav secret service agents Josip Perković and Zdravko Mustač continued on Tuesday.

Two days ago a group of Croatian generals, including retired General Ante Gotovina, sign a petition to have Croatian President Zoran Milanović pardon the two former Yugoslav secret agents. The move has caused a stir among the Croatian public. In 2016 Perković and Mustač were sentenced to live in prison for their role in the assassination of Croatian dissident Stjepan Đureković in Germany in 1983.

"I don't know what Milanović will do, but I know for sure what President Tuđman would have done if he were alive. Based on all the information I gathered when I was preparing the case, I can certainly tell you that President Tuđman would have pardoned Perković and Mustač and Defense Minister Gojko Šušak would have been first on the list of generals who signed it," said lawyer Anto Nobilo, who represented both Perković and Mustač during their trial.

And while the Office of the President has confirmed that it will meet with the generals behind the initiative, government says that this is clearly a political initiative created between Nobilo and President Milanović: "The generals obviously had a noble goal in mind, but in my opinion, their support in this case cannot in any way absolve them of what they have been found guilty of, for murder, nor can it absolve them of everything they did as agents of the secret service of the former Yugoslavia," said Deputy Prime Minister and Veterans’ Affairs Minister Tomo Medved.

Retired General Krešimir Ćosić was among those to sign the letter. However, he suddenly withdrew his signature over the weekend, as did General Marinko Krešić: "I can tell you unequivocally that I wasn't pressured one way or the other. I withdrew my signature on my own. I wanted to help in the way I previously explained, but at the same time I did not want to leave Croatian veterans divided. If we had been divided in the 1990's there wouldn't be a Croatia today. But I think that the Croatian people face more pressing issued than the one we are currently commenting on."

Source: HRT

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