Civic initiatives that were launched to change the national election law and repeal the Istanbul Convention failed to collect enough signatures to call referendums about the issues, Croatian Administration Minister Lovro Kuscevic announced on Wednesday at the government’s session.
Although both of them gathered more than 375,000 signatures, or 10 percent of the registered electorate, which is needed to run a referendum, it turned out that over 40,000 signatures were invalid.
Leaders of the initiatives were disappointed with the government decision. They insist to see all the figures and signatures that were deemed invalid. “We want to see every invalid signature,” Kristina Pavlovic from the initiative that wants to repeal the Istanbul Convention told local news portal Dnevnik.hr.
Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said on Wednesday at the government’s session that both initiatives would have a chance to look into all signatures and figures.
The Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence against Women and Domestic Violence, better known as the Istanbul Convention, was ratified in the Croatian parliament on April 13. Conservatives in Croatia believe that the Convention introduces the concept of “a third gender” in the national legislation and therefore don’t support it.
The other initiative “The People Decides” wants to change the election law by reducing the number of MPs from 150 to 120 and redrawing constituencies. It also wishes to reduce the number of MPs who are representing ethnic minorities in Croatia.