Croatia's prime Minister Andrej Plenković on Saturday dismissed Defense Minister Mario Banozic after he was involved in a car collision in which another driver was killed.
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Prime minister Andrej Plenkovic told a press conference that Banozic was also in hospital with serious injuries.
Banozic was in his private car leaving the eastern town of Vinkovci when he was in collision with a van.
Authorities said the van driver was killed.
"You have heard the circumstances of the accident and we express regret and concern about the condition of the minister who is hospitalized with serious injuries," Plenkovic said.
"I have relieved minister Banozic of his duties as minister of defense," he added.
Banozic suffered serious head injuries and was rushed to hospital but his life was not threatened, government spokesman Marko Milic said earlier.
PM Plenković named Zdravko Jakop as the country's new defence minister.
Police said: ""The investigation of the traffic accident, led by the Deputy County State Attorney's Office in Vukovar, found that the 44-year-old driver (state official) of a personal vehicle with Vinkovci license plates, moving from the direction of Vinkovci in the direction of Županja, performed an overtaking action on the left side of the freight vehicle that was moving in the same direction in front of him, without being convinced that he could do so in a safe way without disturbing traffic from the opposite direction, as a result of which there was an impact of the front of the passenger vehicle into the front of the van (truck) of Pula license plates, which was driven from the opposite direction by a 40-year-old.
As a result of the injuries sustained, the 40-year-old driver died at the scene, while the 44-year-old driver was transported by emergency medical personnel to the General County Hospital in Vinkovci and then to the Clinical Hospital Center Osijek for further treatment."
Due to the suspicion that the violation of traffic regulations caused a traffic accident, a criminal complaint will be filed against the 44-year-old driver with the Vukovar County State Attorney's Office for the criminal offense of Causing a Traffic Accident in Road Traffic. ■