Milanovic: I don’t want to see N1 beaten down, the problem can be solved easily

NEWS 24.03.2021 14:54
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zoran milanović
Source: N1

President of Croatia, Zoran Milanovic, was visiting the island of Cres on Wednesday, and was asked by a N1 reporter to comment on the cable provider A1's decision to stop carrying N1 television on March 29.

“Well, since you’re from N1, I wouldn’t want this to turn into sort of a commemoration event, or a obituary, or a testament – I would like to say that I don’t want to see you beaten down, because otherwise things like these won’t be broadcast. These things I’m saying, I’m saying them live, and anyone who wants to can listen to it, and apart from you, only YUTEL 4 does that, which nobody listens and nobody watches, because nobody trusts them,” Milanovic quipped.

He was sarcastically referring to state television’s channel HRT 4 as YUTEL, a short-lived Yugoslav Television program from the early 90s which had been formed to counter the increasingly nationalist propaganda of republic-level state media in the Yugoslav decentralized media system. The term “Yutel” is nowadays used as a slur by Croatian nationalists to refer to any state-run propaganda.

HRT 4 is the Croatian state television’s little-watched channel dedicated to news programming which N1 television sees as its main rival.

“So, accordingly, we’ll see how the government… which could solve this issue in one move, just like they had passed this illiterate law which is against the Constitution (on the appointment of Supreme Court chief justice), well they can also change the law to allow a television, which is, realistically speaking, objective as much as it can be, and which cares, and which I agree with at least 40 percent of the time – which is an awful lot – to survive,” Milanovic told reporters.

Milanovic, a former leader of the Social Democrats, has been embroiled for weeks now in a dispute with the conservative HDZ-led Parliament over the appointment of the next Supreme Court chief justice, claiming that the procedure now used by Parliament, which involves an open call to applicants, is against the law. Milanovic claims it’s the President’s authority to select a candidate which the Parliament then has to confirm.

On March 29, Croatian subscribers using A1 provider’s services will no longer be able to watch channels produced by United Media – N1 television and Sport Klub – because negotiations to extend the existing agreement have failed.

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