Suspect held in Zagreb bomb attacks


An NGO calls the police investigation quick and comprehensive.

By Drazen Remikovic for Southeast European Times in Zagreb -- 15/01/13


The work of Croatian police in investigating two bombings last week in Zagreb is being called “comprehensive.” [AFP]

Police in Croatia are ruling out terrorism in two bombings that shook Zagreb last week and are holding a suspect who was injured in one of the attacks. Authorities would not release the suspect's name, but media reports in Croatia identify him as Vojislav Blazevic, 54, of Zagreb.

"We can say that we have a suspect and that he is now in hospital after he was injured in the blast," Vitomir Bijelic, chief of the Department of Criminal Police of Croatia, told SETimes. "During an investigation, police conducted more than 250 informative interviews. Due to explosions and security situation, police will increase the number of police patrols in Zagreb in the coming days."

Authorities did not release a motive in the case, but are classifying it as "a criminal offence against public security" and not terrorism.

The first bomb struck a train on Wednesday (January 9th) on a busy railway track in a suburb west of Zagreb, but there were no casualties. The second incident on January 11th was in the western part of the city, injuring Blazevic.

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Igor Tabak, a national security analyst and former expert member of parliament's Defence Committee and president of the defence and security NGO Udruga OBRIS-Obrana i sigurnost, said that the police work was quick and comprehensive.

"After the second explosion it could be noted that the citizens are upset. The investigation went well, but the people were not well informed by the police about the whole situation, and that is what has brought panic. However, we cannot talk about the terrorist attack due to the low power of explosive devices and the lack of a political base," he said.

Some citizens are still upset.

"The police responded quickly, but the big question is whether they managed to find him if he wasn’t hurt himself. He could do it at noon and not at midnight, and then the consequences would be disastrous. Luckily no one was on the streets when he did that. Me and my family will not go out late at night for some time now," Milijan Vrazalic, 41, of Zagreb told SETimes.

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