plenkovic, HDZ.jpg
Photograph: Hina/ Tomislav Pavlek/ tp

Elected representatives of the Hungarian and of the Czech and Slovak minorities, Robert Jankovics and Vladimir Bilek respectively, on Thursday gave their signatures of support to Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) leader Andrej Plenkovic as the future prime minister-designate to form the new government.

"If you are referring to the colleagues you've just seen, that's right," Plenkovic told reporters outside the HDZ offices when asked if he had received the signatures of the two minority MPs who arrived at the HDZ offices for talks just before Plenkovic's address to reporters.

Before entering the HDZ offices, Jankovics confirmed to reporters that he would give his signature to Plenkovic.

"The key word is trust. I cannot foresee what the Hungarian ethnic minority will be needing in the next four years, but if we trust one another, we will implement what is necessary," he told reporters.

He stressed that his requests in negotiations with HDZ officials concerned the Hungarian community's cultural autonomy and the work of its associations and educational institutions.

Bilek said that there were still some outstanding issues in talks with the HDZ, but that they were going in the right direction and that he did not doubt that Croatia would soon have a prime minister-designate.

He said that issues important to his ethnic minority were related to the cultural autonomy of Czechs and Slovaks, education and development of infrastructure in rural areas populated by members of the Czech and Slovak minorities and other ethnic groups.

Milan Bandic, leader of the Party of Work and Solidarity, today did not confirm media speculation that his future club of parliamentary deputies has six members who have given signatures of support to HDZ leader Plenkovic, which would leave the HDZ chief short of just four signatures to have the minimum 76 signatures of support required for him to be given the mandate by President of the Republic to form a new government without Bridge even, with which the HDZ has been negotiating the formation of the new government.

The leader of the People's Party - Reformists, Radimir Cacic, said on Thursday that his party would support Plenkovic with its signature without setting any conditions because it was in the country's interest and that the party would decide on its support to the new government after it saw its platform and composition.

Cacic said that his party believed that yet another election would not be good for Croatia and its citizens and that Plenkovic should be given a chance to form a government "because that is in the interest of the state and citizens".

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