CANBERRA – Serbia condemns in the strongest terms the recent celebration in Australia of the foundation date of the Nazi puppet Independent State of Croatia (NDH), an event attended by a number of Australian officials, the Serbian Embassy in Canberra said in a release on Thursday.
It is devastating to learn that organizations and individuals are still there and operational who so brutally abuse the freedom and democracy in the country by celebrating the foundation day of a fascist entity called the Independent State of Croatia, whose criminal character is undeniable, the Embassy stated on its website.
Furthermore, even more tragic is the fact that in their morally monstrous glorification of fascism and Nazism, such organizations and individuals are trying to draw people from the current political scene in Australia, even the prime minister himself, into their activities.
The controversial celebration was organized at Croatian community center ‘Sydney’ on April 13, and was attended by around 200 Australian Croats and a number of Australian politicians. Australian MP Craig Kelly gave a brief speech to the gathering to convey congratulations and best wishes from Prime Minister Tony Abbott.
Kelly, who has been subjected to criticism for attending the center for an event celebrating the setting up of the Nazi puppet state, which came into being after the World War Two invasion of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, later said he was “mortified” at what had been reported and that his words had been taken out of context.
Australia’s Liberal MP said in a statement that he attended the event described as “celebrating Croatian independence” on behalf of Parliamentary Secretary Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, and was not representing the prime minister as had been reported.
The Serbian Embassy in Canberra said that such events cause deep distress and concern to the Serbian community in Australia.
The Republic of Serbia condemns in the strongest terms any occurrence of glorifying fascist ghosts of the past, and strongly believes that there can be no justification or excuse for tolerating or – even worse – supporting such activities, no matter who the organizers or participants are, the release said.
Affiliated with the fascists and Nazis during World War Two, the so-called Independent State of Croatia adopted and pursued their policies, including the deportation and killing of Jews, Serbs, Roma and other non-Croats.