19:08 / 13.04.2022.

Author: Katja Miličić

Opposition MPs “puzzled” by drone crash probe finding

Parts of the drone that crashed in Zagreb on March 10

Parts of the drone that crashed in Zagreb on March 10

Foto: Slavko Midzor / PIXSELL

After the team investigating the March 10 drone crash in Zagreb presenting their findings to the public on Wednesday, opposition politicians expressed skepticism over claims what had initially been reported as a 120 kilogram aerial bomb was now described as an altered bomb containing an “unconventional” explosive.

Parliamentary Defense Committee chairman Franko Vidović of the SDP said he was aware of much of the information presented by investigators on Wednesday but was struck by one detail.

"First, we were told it was a 120 kilogram bomb. After that we were told it was 40 kilos. Now, we've arrived at a bomb filled with an unconventional substance," Vidović remarked.

He is not the only one confused by the changing information that has been coming from the investigation since it began. The chairman of the Internal Affairs and National Security Committee, Siniša Hajdaš Dončić, also a member of the SDP, said he was very disappointed with the way the investigation has been handled.

"What worries me is that hasty remarks made by the PM and some members of the government created a kind of hysteria. Now that the results of the investigation are in, we hear that the bomb contained neither military nor commercial explosives. So, was it slapped together by aliens? It sounds to me like they are cleaning up after the PM's remarks,” Hajdaš Dončić said, suggesting that investigators were helping Prime Minister Andrej Plenković save face.

Gordan Akrap, an expert in hybrid warfare, says it is unlikely that we will learn who sent the drone before the war in Ukraine comes to an end. He believes Croatia was not the drone's target and the aircraft likely drifted off course due to a malfunction.

Both Vidović and Hajdaš Dončić say the most important lesson to be learned is from the security system failures that allowed an unidentified military drone to travel over three NATO member states without anyone raising the alarm. Croatian officials criticized NATO for its slow response to the incident. NATO said its integrated air and missile defense had tracked the aircraft’s flight path. However, that information was not conveyed to Croatian authorities.

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