D.I.C. Veritas

SRNA, 09.08.2017, Discriminatory Laws force Serbs to leave Croatia

BELGRADE, August 9 /SRNA/ – Director of Veritas Documentation and Information Centre, Savo Strbac, told SRNA that the laws of “European Croatia” discriminating Serbs proved to be efficient for continuing the Croatia without Serbs policy, which is best illustrated by the fact that one Serb expelled from Croatia returns to Croatia from Serbia on annual basis, while five Serb returnees leave the country of birth again and come to Serbia.

“The silent exodus of the Serbs from Croatia to Serbia is continuing and nobody finds it important, nor the public in Serbia knows about it,” Strbac has warned.

He has pointed out that, on the other hand, the Croatian public creates an image on Croats being jeopardized in Serbia.

“Recently, the leader of the Democratic Alliance of Croats in Vojvodina, Tomislav Zigmanov, has stated that the Croats in Serbia must remain silent and hide during the days preceding the marking of Storm Operation, which was publicized in Croatia. In short, they must not show up. This is a pure replacement of the thesis. God, I wish the Serbs in Croatia have rights as Croats in Serbia,” Strbac has pointed out.

He says that Croatia's discrimination against Serbs through its laws is not visible to international factors and various protectors of citizens because it seems that “the law is the same for all,” but they all ignore the fact of the recent war and unequal status of Serbs in Croatia.

Commenting on the Law on Taxes, which should come into force on January 1 next year, which stipulates a threefold higher property tax for Serbs, Strbac has stated that it would be acceptable for Serbs if they were not expelled, robbed and impoverished twice in the last century.

This way, as he says, Serbs cannot be treated like, for example, Croats whose real estate is in Croatia, and they work abroad.

“I cannot identify those who were expelled with those who voluntarily go to work abroad. There are 400,000 people expelled from Croatia, and there are at least 150,000 houses in their possession.” The house that someone forcibly left cannot be treated as same as the house of the one who has not been expelled,” Strbac has pointed out.

He has emphasized that it would be fair and humane if the tax rate on the property for the expelled ones is the lowest, even below the lowest rate for the devastated real estate, or if the owners are exempted from paying taxes.

“The fact that everyone is treated the same is a clear message to the Serbs no to return and to sell the property. Believe me, many Serbs face surcharges, and that's why they say – ‘Let them have everything, I do want either house or property',” Strbac said.

He has said that Croatia has so far passed more than 20 laws whose provisions are discriminatory for the Serbs, and when it comes to the property, this is the most visible in the Law on Agricultural Land, which provides for severe sanctions for those who do not cultivate their agricultural land, or do not cultivate it according to the agri – environment measures.

“The Serbs who have returned cannot cultivate the land because it is an old-age population, so the land owned by the Serbs is the most uncultivated, not to mention meeting the given measures. The consequence of this law is that not only the people will fail to return, but in the end, their property will be sold to settle debts to the state,” Strbac has warned.




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