Slovenian Party Head Changes Mind about Referendum

Zmago Jelincic, the president of the Slovenian National Party, had a change of heart. This morning, before a meeting between Croatian and Slovenian prime ministers Ivo Sanader and Borut Pahor, he told the media he was against a referendum on Croatia’s membership in NATO because his party “does not want to cooperate with those on the margins”, meaning the non-parliamentary Party of the Slovenian People from Maribor, which initiated the signing of a petition for a referendum.

But in the afternoon, after prime ministers Sanader and Pahor held a meeting in Mokrice, he said that five officials of his party would sign the petition for the referendum. The party has, thus, become the only parliamentary party in Slovenia which has publicly stated it supported the referendum.

– We will not allow Croatians to pull our leg – Jelincic told a news conference. He added that the year 1991 was repeating when, according to his claims, certain Slovenian politicians sold land to Croatians.

– Croatia’s joining NATO and the EU are intertwined, although the Slovenian government is denying this – Jelincic said.

He said that his party had sent a memo to the chairman of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso, in which he asked of him and other members to stop speeding up the process of Croatia joining NATO and the EU. Slovenian nationalists suggested to the EU leaders that they should observe real information and take into consideration the conduct of Croatian politicians in the past during their negotiations with Croatia.

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