tomislav karamarko.jpg
Photograph: HINA/ Daniel KASAP / dk

First Deputy Prime Minister and Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) leader Tomislav Karamarko on Wednesday dismissed speculations that the HDZ is being shaken up by struggles for power inside the party leadership, refuting those speculations as misinformation.

"There are no (internal) frictions. This is misinformation launched by those who are trying to destabilise the HDZ, which has been the election winner for the past four years. The party is united," Karamarko said in an interview with the RTL commercial broadcaster on Wednesday afternoon.

He also refuted claims that former HDZ official Ivic Pasalic, a politician-turned-businessman, is trying to exert influence on certain HDZ members.

"Those are theories which I do not believe in," said Karamarko assessing the situation in the HDZ as stable.

Karamarko's interview aired after the Conflict of Interest Commission earlier in the day decided to launch proceedings against him in order to determine whether he is in conflict of interest because of the business relationship between his wife's company and his friend Josip Petrovic, who is a consultant for the Hungarian MOL oil company.

Commenting on the Opposition plan's to file a vote of no confidence in him over this case, Karamarko said that the attacks against him are "so brutal and yet so infantile."

"This bears witness to their (the SDP-led Opposition) powerlessness," Karamarko said.

As for the leaking of contracts between the company owned by his wife and the company owned by Petrovic, Karamarko said that the scandal was "provoked" and that documents were probably leaked from the Tax Administration, that is people close to the former government.

Karamarko insisted in an interview with the HRT public broadcaster that he had not breached any law and that he always served only the interests of his country.

He ruled out a snap elections, explaining that "an early election would be a loss of time and we have no right to do that".

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