The leader of the Party of Democratic Action (SDA), which represents interests of ethnic Croatian Bosniaks, has said that this party will insist on the re-introduction of the additional voting rights for members of minorities in Croatia.
Speaking at a news conference, the party's president Semso Tankovic said that a recent ruling of the Constitutional Court on annulling Article 1 of the Constitutional Law on the Rights of National Minorities was expected.
The Constitutional Court annulled the article which was amended last year, saying that the provision guaranteeing in advance seats in the national parliament for one minority, namely the Serbs, was unconstitutional.
The court unanimously dismissed as unacceptable the provision under which ethnic minorities that account for more than 1.5% of the total population should be guaranteed in advance at least three seats in Parliament based on a general voting right.
The court found that the institute of a double voting right for the ethnic minorities was not questionable, adding that the ethnic minorities have the right to vote for their representatives in 10 constituencies based on a general voting right and in special constituencies for minorities.
It, however, said that because of the provision in question these rules, as specified in the Constitutional Law on the Rights of National Minorities, may not be applied at the forthcoming parliamentary election.
Tankovic expressed hope that the situation caused by the court's ruling would be solved until the forthcoming parliamentary elections.
The SDA leader holds the term "double voting rights" to be inappropriate and proposing the term "additional voting rights" instead.
He said that in Croatia there were 22 registered ethnic minorities qualified to elect their representatives and therefore he hopes that the additional voting rights would be applied in the next elections.
"As far as I know, none of political parties oppose this," Tankovic, a deputy in the Croatian parliament.
According to him the SDA will probably run in the coming elections on its own, but he hinted at a possibility of talks with major parties on cooperation having in mind that the figure of 35,000 ethnic Bosniaks being eligible to vote is not negligible,
The ruling coalition recently proposed holding elections on 4 December.
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