The Jutarnji List daily on Wednesday ran an article on a decision of the High Magistrate Court to fine a local singer, Mario Roso, for uttering the salute "For the homeland ready" while singing the song of Marko Perkovic Thompson "Bojna Cavoglave" during a celebration of the Operation Storm's anniversary in the town of Makarska.
The daily newspaper says that it has obtained a copy of the June 13 final ruling of the High Magistrate Court which reads that the above-mentioned salute had been used as the official salute of the 1941-1945 Ustasha movement that was based on racism and therefore symbolises hatred to people on the basis of their race, religion and ethnicity.
According to the daily, the court dismisses the defence's claims that the salute sung by singer Roso was identical to the form used in the original text of the song "Bojna Cavoglave" and it holds that the defendant should have been aware of possible negative effects of chanting that salute.
The court also holds that the defendant "should have refrained from such behaviour".
The court says in its ruling that chanting that salute in this case was therefore in contravention of Article 39 of Croatia's Constitution that reads that "any call for or incitement to war or use of violence, to national, racial or religious hatred, or any form of intolerance shall be prohibited and punishable by law."
The fact that the mentioned salute was a part of a song that is considered an artistic creation does not alter the fact that the salute also symbolises hatred for other people due to their religious and ethnic background, the explanation says.
The court holds that chanting that salute "creates a latent danger, unease and anxiety among persons who do not belong to a majority ethnic or religious or group".
Roso was fined 765 kuna plus court costs of HRK 200, the daily reported.