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|President of the
Croatian Party of Rights 1861
11 September 1993
|Preceded by||Office established|
|Member of Parliament|
20 May 1990 – 7 November 1995
|1st President of the
Croatian Party of Rights
25 February 1991 – 11 September 1993
|Preceded by||Office established|
|Succeeded by||Anto Đapić|
9 December 1960 |
Zagreb, SFR Yugoslavia
|Political party||Croatian Party of Rights 1861|
|Croatian Party of Rights (1991-1993)|
|Parents||Smiljan and Arna|
Dobroslav Paraga (9 December 1960) is a Croatian right-wing politician. He was first president of the Croatian Party of Rights, after party was reestablished in 1991. In 1993 he founded a split party, Croatian Party of Rights 1861 due to disagreement with Anto Đapić.
In his early days Paraga advocated the secession of Croatia from Yugoslavia which led to persecution by the Communist authorities. He used that persecution as an argument against Yugoslavia and its low human rights standards. Because of that he became one of the best known dissidents.
When a multi-party system was established in Croatia, Paraga initially joined the Croatian Democratic Union of Franjo Tuđman. However, involvement with the party clearly indicated that there was variation in sentiment among its members. Paraga felt that his CDU did not appear to be the radical party which he had expected, and so the party split. Paraga, and a delegation of CDU dissidents, reformed the Croatian Party of Rights (HSP).
While Tuđman saw the Croatian path of independence through negotiations with Slobodan Milošević, Paraga formed the growing chorus of those who preferred direct and resolute military action against Krajina Serbs and Yugoslav People's Army. Because of that, his party formed its own militia, the Croatian Defence Forces (Croatian: Hrvatske obrambene snage, HOS). Paraga's situation was similar to that of Dragoslav Bokan in Serbia. In an interview in 2000 Paraga stated about the aims of the party that they are “for a Croatia to the Drina, and for a Bosnia and Herzegovina to the Adriatic”. Paraga explained that they think they would be much stronger as a union of two countries.
Paraga's growing popularity, together with his militia, began to look like a serious threat to the Croatian government. Reaction came in the form of arrests, indictments and all kinds of intimidation towards HSP and HOS members, even stretching to deaths of HSP members in mysterious circumstances. This campaign gradually subsided, with HOS units formally joining the Croatian Army and the escalation of war in neighbouring Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Paraga and the HSP had high hopes of becoming the major political factor before the 1992 presidential and parliamentary elections, but those hopes, despite of the HSP colourful rallies being well-attended, did not materialise. The HSP did enter the Croatian Parliament and Paraga came fourth among presidential candidates, but it was clear that the party was far from its target. Another blow came in the form of high treason charges against Paraga and his associate Anto Đapić, who were stripped of their parliamentary immunity.
Those charges were ultimately dropped, but the most serious blow for Paraga came when Đapić turned against him and took over the leadership of the HSP at the 1993 party convention in Kutina. Paraga accused Đapić of being in cahoots with Tuđman and tried to retrieve party leadership in court.
Following the failure of the effort and second split with fellow party members, Paraga founded a party called Croatian Party of Rights 1861, claiming to be the true descendent of the 19th century party in Austria-Hungary.
- "Blaž Kraljević zaslužio je najljepše ulice u Sarajevu i Mostaru". Jutarnje novine (in Bosnian). 2000-11-14. Retrieved 2011-04-25.
- "Kreće bitka za vlast nakon šestorke". Slobodna Dalmacija (in Croatian). 2000-09-29. Retrieved 2010-11-21.
- "Paraga izgubio spor s HSP-om". Slobodna Dalmacija (in Croatian). 2002-07-20. Retrieved 2010-11-21.