- Category : Political
- Type : GE
- Profile : 6/2 - Role Model / Hermit
- Definition : Split - Small (27,34,58)
- Incarnation Cross : LAX Spirit 2
Ivo Josipovic; born 28 August 1957) is a Croatian politician, the third and current President of Croatia, having taken office in 2010. Josipovi? entered politics as a member of the League of Communists of Croatia (SKH), and played a key role in the democratic transformation of this party as the author of the first statute of the SDP that replaced the SKH-SKJ. He left politics in 1994, but returned in 2003 as an independent Member of Parliament. In addition to politics, Josipovi? has also worked as a university professor, legal expert, musician and composer.
Josipovic entered the 2009–2010 presidential election as the official candidate of the SDP, which he had rejoined in 2008. In the first round he topped eleven rivals with 32.4% of the vote, and entered the second round with the independent candidate Milan Bandi? who had secured 14.8%. He went from being almost unknown to the general public in Croatia to winning 60.26% in the final election. He campaigned for Nova Pravednost (New Justice), calling for a new social and legal framework to address the deep social injustices, corruption and organised crime. This includes the protection of individual rights and the promotion of such fundamental values as equality, human rights, LGBT rights, justice, diligence, social empathy and creativity.
Josipovic was inaugurated as the third Croatian President on February 18, 2010, at St. Mark's Square, Zagreb. His term officially began at midnight on February 19.
Ivo Josipovic's parents are originally from Baška Voda in Dalmatia. Josipovi?, however, was born in Zagreb, where he attended both primary school and a secondary music school. As a teenager he was a promising football player.
He is married to Tatjana, a civil law professor and legal expert. They have one daughter, Lana (born c. 1991).
Apart from his native Croatian, he speaks English fluently and has some understanding of German.
Ivo Josipovic attended the Faculty of Law of the University of Zagreb, from which he graduated passing his bar examination in 1980. He completed his M.A. in criminal law in 1985 and his Ph.D. in criminal sciences in 1994. He began as a lecturer at the same law faculty in 1984, and has since become a Professor for criminal procedure law, international criminal law and misdemeanour law.
Josipovic has been a visiting researcher at a number of prestigious institutes including the Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law in Freiburg in Breisgau, Germany, the Institute for Criminal Law of the University of Graz, Austria, as well as the HEUNI Institute (European Institute for Crime Prevention and Control) in Helsinki, Finland. He has also spent time as a private researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Foreign and Private International Law in Hamburg, Germany as well the Yale University in the USA. As member of several domestic and international legal and artists' associations he published over 85 academic and professional papers in domestic and international journals. In year 1994, he co-founded the independent Hrvatski pravni centar (Croatian Law Center). Josipovic helped to save 180 Croatian prisoners of war from Serbian detention centers and has represented Croatia before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) and the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY). He participated in several international projects and acted as a Council of Europe expert in evaluation of prisons in Ukraine, Mongolia and Azerbaijan.
After graduating from a secondary music school he enrolled at the Composition Department of the Zagreb Music Academy under the tutelage of renowned scholar Stanko Horvat. He graduated in 1983 majoring in composition. Between 1987 and 2004 Josipovi? was also a lecturer at the Zagreb Music Academy.
Josipovic composed some 50 chamber music pieces for various instruments, chamber orchestra and symphony orchestra. In 1985 he won an award from the European Broadcasting Union for his composition "Samba da Camera" and in 1999 he was awarded the Porin Award for the same composition, which was followed by another Porin Award in 2000 for his piece titled "Tisu?u lotosa" ("A Thousand Lotuses"). His most successful pieces also include "Igra staklenih perli" (The Glass Bead Game) and "Tuba Ludens". These pieces are performed by numerous musicians in Croatia and abroad. Since 1991 Josipovi? also served as director of the Music Biennale Zagreb (MBZ), an international festival of contemporary classical music.
During the 2010 election campaign Josipovi? announced that as president he will compose an opera based on the murder of John Lennon.
In 1980 Ivo Josipovic became a member of the League of Communists of Croatia. He played a key role in the democratic transformation of this party as the author of the first statute of the Social Democratic Party of Croatia (SDP). In 1994, he left politics and the SDP, dedicating himself to law and music. Upon the invitation of Ivica Ra?an, acting Prime Minister at the time, he returned to politics in 2003, and became an independent MP with the SDP and Vice-President of the SDP Representatives' Group in the Croatian Parliament. During his mandate in 2005, he was also a representative in the Assembly of the City of Zagreb. In 2007, he was re-elected to the Croatian Parliament. He formally renewed his SDP membership in 2008. On July 12, 2009 he was elected as the party's official presidential candidate. As MP he served on various parliamentary committees dealing with legislative, judiciary and constitutional questions, as well as for defining parliamentary rules of procedure and the political system.
On 20 June 2009, Josipovi? was nominated as one of the official SDP candidates for the Croatian presidential election, 2009–2010. He won in a primary against Ljubo Jur?i? on 12 July, becoming the party's official candidate.
On 27 December 2009, Josipovi? won the first round of the presidential election with 32.42% of the vote. He faced Milan Bandi? (runner-up with 14.83%) in the second round on 10 January 2010.
On 10 January 2010 he was elected as the 3rd president of Croatia with 60.26% of the vote, beating Milan Bandi? in the second round.
President of Croatia
In April 2010, Josipovic met with the Bosnian Croat Catholic archbishop cardinal Vinko Pulji? and the head of the Islamic Community reis Mustafa Ceri? and the three made a joint visit at the sites of Ahmi?i massacre and Križan?evo selo killings, and paid respect to the victims. Ivo Josipovic made an official visit to Bosnia during which he addressed the Parliamentary Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and in his speech he expressed a "deep regret" for Croatia's involvement in efforts to divide Bosnia and Herzegovina in the 1990s, resulting in the Croat-Bosniak war and suffering for many people on both sides. The presidency of the Croatian Democratic Union condemned the apology. Jadranka Kosor, the current Prime Minister and member of the Croatian Democratic Union, criticized Josipovi? and accused him of breaching the constitution. The vice president of the Croatian Democratic Union, Andrija Hebrang, contested that Josipovic should have visited Bleiburg before Ahmi?i and Grabovica.
He has chosen a couple of counselors who have caused scandals. Josipovic's first option as counselour for rural areas and agriculture was Mato Mlinaric, who was dismissed two hours after being appointed when the press discovered that he had some non-paid tax debts. Former journalist Drago Pilsel served as Josipovi?'s counselor for a month, but left the position after a publishing a column in which he insulted his opponents.
In May 2010, Josipovic met the leaders of the Republika Srpska Rajko Kuzmanovic and Milorad Dodik, as well as the prominent Bosniak leader Sulejman Tihi?, and visited the site of the Sijekovac killings to pay respect to the victims. The site and the visit provoked some controversy in the Croatian public, with allegations of impropriety levelled against President Josipovi? and the authorities of Republika Srpska for misattributing some of the casualties. During a visit to Israel in February 2012, Josipovi? apologized for atrocities committed against Jews by the Croatian Ustaše regime during the 1940s. Josipovi?'s apology was accompanied by criticism in Croatia because his predecessor Stjepan Mesi? had already apologized earlier for the crimes. Josipovi? also said that "he is the son of Tito's partisan".
Standing in opinion polls
In the year 2010, President Josipovic had on average maintained a very high 81% approval rating (according to Ipsos), surpassing the former president Stjepan Mesi?. With ratings reaching as high as 84% in May, August and December in 2010 and 2011, Ivo Josipovi? was ranked as the most popular Croatian politician in the past 20 years (with the possible exception of Franjo Tu?man), since Croatia's secession from Yugoslavia. However, while he remains the most popular Croatian active politician, in the first half of the 2012 his popularity suffered a decline: from ratings of over 80% at the end of 2011 and 84% in February, 2012, to 74.2% in March, 2012 and 68.8% in April 2012.