Concepts of National and Constitutional Identity in Croatian Constitutional Law

In: Review of Central and East European Law
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  • 1 University of Maribor, Slovenia
  • 2 University of Zagreb, Croatia

The Croatian Constitutional Court recently rendered two important decisions concerning two national minorities’ rights: the right to vote in parliamentary elections; and the right to use minority language. In both decisions, the Court relied on a newly developed concept of Croatian national identity. This article explores and critically explains the wider social, political and legal context that has produced the emergence of the idea of a constitutional identity in Croatian constitutional jurisprudence. In addition, it evaluates the potential effects this new constitutional concept may have for future developments in Croatia’s political and constitutional system. This article also compares Croatian and Slovenian solutions to certain questions as the Slovenian Constitutional Court has ruled on strikingly similar issues, but arrived at different conclusions.