Wednesday , April 24 2019

EU parliament chief sorry for opening war wounds

Bloomberg

The head of the European Parliament apologized after touching off a dispute by referring to parts of Croatia and Slovenia as Italian on a day commemorating the slaughter of thousands of his countrymen following World War II.
Speaking in honor of those Italians who died and hundreds of thousands more who fled from Adriatic Sea border regions to escape Yugoslav partisans during the foibe massacres of WW II, Antonio Tajani referred to “Italian Istria” and “Italian Dalmatia.” The regions subsequently became part of Yugoslavia and, later, Croatia and Slovenia.
Croatian member of European Parliament Ivana Maletic denounced Tajani’s comments as “completely unacceptable” and said the spat may turn voters in the Balkan state away from polling booths in the elections for the chamber slated for May. She was joined by Slovenian Foreign Minister Miro Cerar, who tweeted: “any distortion of historical facts about the events in the border area between Slovenia and Italy is unacceptable.” Tajani apologized, saying his reference to the regions “was in no way a territorial claim” but instead to honor those who were exiled and their descendants, many of whom were present at the ceremony in Basovizza, Italy.

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