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Photograph: HINA / Jure DIVIĆ / mm

Spokesman for the Bridge party Nikola Grmoja on Friday dismissed media speculation that a meeting of Bridge chief Bozo Petrov with representatives of the Franak association of citizens who used to have loans pegged to the Swiss franc had anything to do with the transfer of Franak MP Goran Aleksic to the Bridge parliamentary group.

"Petrov's meeting with members of the Franak association focused on the treatment of the executive authorities of problems members of the Franak association are faced with, and I don't think that Aleksic even attended the meeting. They are seeking support for their legal battle against commercial banks," Grmoja told Hina.

The media reported on Friday that Petrov held an unannounced two-and-a-half-hour-long meeting with representatives of the Franak association, after which he said the talks focused on loan conversions and the arbitration process in Washington. Petrov also denied the meeting was about Aleksic's transfer to Bridge. After the September 11 election, Aleksic entered parliament as part of The Only Option coalition, gathered around the Human Shield party.

Bridge, which originally won 13 seats in parliament, gained another seat after Human Shield member Hrvoje Runtic joined them and the media are speculating that Bridge could grow even further following recent conflicts in Human Shield.

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