ivan vrdoljak.jpg
Photograph: HINA/ Daniel KASAP / dk

Croatian People's Party (HNS) leader Ivan Vrdoljak said that the HNS main committee and presidency would not be discussing support for the future government of the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) and the Bridge party on Saturday, urging the two parties to finally form the government.

Speaking in an interview with Croatian Radio, Vrdoljak said that "the HNS and Bridge are totally opposite poles, because the HNS's ideology is freedom of man and freedom of enterprise. It never occurred to us to seek control the ministries of the interior and justice, and that was the first thing that they thought of."

"If one considers Bridge's ideological positions, one can see that they are led by certain groups which no one knows about, but which are essentially tied to the Church, so it is normal that these two poles are opposed to each other on the political scene," he added.

Vrdoljak said that the HDZ and Bridge should stop negotiating and form the government, carry out the tax reform and deliver on the promises they had made. He added that the HNS would help them in achieving that as a stable alternative and opposition.

Asked to comment on media reports saying that the HNS was inclined to negotiating with the HDZ on forming the new government, Vrdoljak said that this was so because the HNS had nine seats in parliament and was interesting in that regard.

"I really want the HDZ and Bridge to finally start trusting each other, because they are so obsessed with mutual mistrust. I have said a thousand times that the HDZ and Bridge deserve to form the government," the HNS leader said.

He said that after the future prime minister-designate produced the necessary 76 signatures to ensure a majority in parliament and form the government, the HNS would back the new speaker of parliament but would not back the new government.

Vrdoljak denied media reports saying that the HNS would support the parliamentary majority on condition that the HDZ backed HNS candidate Anka Mrak-Taritas for the position of Zagreb mayor.

He said that the meeting of the HNS main committee and presidency on Saturday would focus on local elections, due next spring. He announced that the HNS would run in the elections on its own.

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