MOSCOW – A document of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on strengthening of neo-Nazism in the world, also mentioning Croatia, caused different reactions in Zagreb.
In the document, which uses data published by Serbian National Council on the position of the Serbs in Croatia, is noted that in the last 19 years number of Serbs has been reduced by two thirds. It is also claimed that 30,000 Serbs were forced to become Catholics, so they would not have a problem in school and workplace. This is the first time such a figure was presented, although the Serbs, especially young ones, so far argued that they change religion to help them live in Croatia and to avoid discrimination, writes Serbian daily “Vecernje Novosti”.
“I have never heard of something like this so far, or met with such data. I am sure there were such cases, especially in the nineties, but I have not heard that transition from one religion to another is being done systematically,” said Furio Radin, President of the Committee for Human Rights and National Minorities of the Croatian Parliament for the daily.
Radin said that mass transition was a case during the NDH, that today one cannot deny that there are pressures, but that no one has specifically spoken about the subject at the sessions of the Parliamentary Committee. He claims that there is sporadic flirtation with the Ustasha movement in Croatia, but that one cannot speak about neo-Nazism.
Russians recorded outbursts of the singer Marko Perkovic Tompson, who in his songs propagated Ustasha ideology, singing about Jasenovac and Stara Gradiska. And his songs glorify Ustasha crimes. The report, created to mark 70 years since the victory over fascism, is very sharp compared to the situation in Croatia. It notes the emergence of aggressive nationalism, ethnic and religious tolerance, primarily directed against Serbs in Croatia.
It also speaks about problems of employment for Serbs, even in cases when the law prescribes preference in employment for minorities. The situation with the recovery of property is not better. The report cites numerous figures released by the Serbian National Council. It is a number of examples of attacks against the Serbs, Cyrillic, denial of guaranteed rights and increasingly aggressive media attacks against Serbian community in Croatia.