Zagreb, 24th and 25th February 1990 – the historic event occurred that would take Croatia on the path of secession from communist Yugoslavia and into an independent state that would join the democratic world.
The event was the First General Assembly of the people’s movement “Croatian Democratic Union” (HDZ) – it was held in Zagreb’s entertainment hall “Lisinski”.
Thundering applause followed almost every word spoken by dr Franjo Tudjman.
The resolution on the Croatian hymn was delivered at this event.
Our beautiful homeland,
O so fearless and gracious.
Our fathers’ ancient glory,
May you be blessed forever.
Dear, you are our only glory,
Dear, you are our only one,
Dear, we love your plains,
Dear, we love your mountains.
Sava, Drava keep on flowing,
Danube, do not lose your vigour,
Deep blue sea, tell the world,
That a Croat loves his homeland.
Whilst his fields are kissed by sunshine,
Whilst his oaks are whipped by wild winds,
Whilst his dear ones go to heaven,
Whilst his live heart beats.
Dr Franjo Tudjman was re-elected as HDZ President.
1,760 delegates from Croatia and the diaspora participated, 297 observers, 320 guests and 54 journalists. Among the guests were the US, The French, the Italian and the Soviet consuls as well as a representative from the Canadian Embassy.
This was the first inaugural assembly of a non-socialist and non-communist party in the former Yugoslavia and the first assembly of a Croatian democratic party in more than 50 years of the one-party communist totalitarianism.
I remember these days as if they happened yesterday! I remember the utter joy at seeing democracy in Croatia on the horizon… reaching for it. Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)