NGOs urge government not to attack judicial authority

Zagreb, 23.07.2013 - Tiskovna konferencija u Ministarstvu financija. Na slici ministar financija Slavko Linić tijekom konferencije. foto FaH/ Damir SENČAR /ds

Platform 112, a group of nongovernmental organisations, on Wednesday called on members of the executive government to refrain from verbal attacks on the judicial authority and especially to avoid direct confrontations with certain judges regarding the way they are handling ongoing cases.

“We ask the government and all ministers to be consistent in applying the separation of powers and not to interfere in the process of delivering judicial decisions, more specifically in the decision of a judge to ask that that the constitutionality of any regulation be examined … even in cases when they believe that a judge does not have sufficient evidence to back his claim. Otherwise, the government is undermining the already fragile legal stability in Croatia,” the statement said.

Finance Minister Slavko Linic said on Monday he was appalled by the decision of a Commercial Court judge to suspend the pre-bankruptcy settlement proceedings in the case of power transmission equipment manufacturer Dalekovod until the Constitutional Court decided whether the Financial Operations and Pre-Bankruptcy Settlement Act was in line with the Constitution.

Linic said he was outraged by the decision of Commercial Court judge Mislav Kolakusic because it showed the extent of legal insecurity in Croatia after many judges had already accepted settlements in other cases, applying the said legislation.