In a bus accident in Croatia, 12 Polish pilgrims died and 32 were injured

VARAZDIN, Croatia, August 6 (Reuters) – Twelve people died in Croatia on Saturday when a Polish bus filled with religious pilgrims rolled off the road and crashed near Varazdin, authorities said.

Thirty-two people were injured in an accident that occurred at 5:40 (0340 GMT) on the highway between Varazdin, in northwest Croatia, and the capital, Zagreb.

Croatian Health Minister Vili Beros said 19 people are in serious condition.

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Marcin Przydacz, the deputy head of the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, who was on his way there on Saturday, said that the injured were treated in five hospitals in Croatia.

He said there were 44 Polish pilgrims on the bus from Poland to Medjugorje, a Roman Catholic shrine in southern Bosnia, including two drivers. Among them were three priests and six nuns, a ministry spokesman said.

Police cleared the accident site after firefighters and medical teams recovered all passengers in a vehicle that had Warsaw license plates.

Polish policemen in Croatia, as part of the project “Safe tourist destination”, helped the Croatian authorities in communicating with the survivors.

An investigation into the cause of the accident has begun.

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Reports by Antonio Bronica in Croatia, Daria Sito-Sucic in Sarajevo and Joana PluciƄska in Warsaw; Editing by Jason Neely, Mark Heinrich and Mike Harrison

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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