zoran milanović - izbori.jpg
Photograph: HINA/ Daniel KASAP / dk

Social Democratic Party (SDP) leader Zoran Milanovic said on Sunday that claims by Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) leader Tomislav Karamarko about electoral fraud were dangerous and worrying.

"When we speak about the first assistant of (Prime Minister) Tihomir Oreskovic, in charge of national security and home affairs, it is extremely absurd and disturbing, and it is also dangerous to claim that someone was defrauded in Croatia in 2015," Milanovic said in the southern town of Sinj.

Karamarko, who is Deputy Prime Minister in the PM Tihomir Oreskovic cabinet, said on Saturday that "there are indications" that the HDZ was defrauded of five or six parliamentary seats in the 8 November parliamentary election and promised that this would be investigated. 

The SDP leader said today that any electoral fraud was impossible in Croatia.

"Even the HDZ cannot rig elections. This is the the best proof that our system is safe as nor can the HDZ commit (electoral) frauds," Milanovic retorted.

He elaborated that each polling station was monitored by representatives from both the HDZ and the SDP during the parliamentary vote.

"Clearly, there was no complaint after the election, and you should ask the DIP (State Election Commission), too," Milanovic said.

The SDP chhief also believes that Karamarko's claims should be viewed against a background of Karamarko's need to explain to his party's members, while he had failed to win two thirds of parliamentary seats, as he had promised.

Milanovic went on to say that Karamarko and his partners "won fewer ballots and seats than parties in the (previous SDP-led) government."

In Croatia's election for the eighth parliament,  the HDZ-led coalition won 59 seats, and the Social Democrat Party (SDP)-led coalition mustered 56 seats while its ally the Istrian Democratic Party (IDS) mustered three seats in the 151-seat legislature, according to official results provided by the DIP. An alliance of slates with independent candidates and the Bridge party candidates emerged third with 19 seats.

The DIP will on Monday present its position on Karamarko's suspicions about irregularities that allegedly affected his party during the 8 November election.

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