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New commander, unchanged objectives

Text: Péter Snoj | Photo: Gábor Kormány |  11:24 August 1, 2023

Headquarters Multinational Division Centre (HQ MND-C) has a new commander in the person of Brigadier General Tibor Králik. On Monday, 31 July Croatian Major General Denis Tretinjak passed the command to the Slovakian general in Alba Regia barracks, Székesfehérvár.

Major General Tretinjak arrived together with the first Croatian contingent to assume command of the headquarters on 1 August 2020. During the three-year tenure of the first leader of the organization, HQ MND-C became a NATO Force Structure element, and also achieved Initial Operational Capability this year. Since his arrival in Székesfehérvár last April, Brigadier General Králik has been deputy commander of the military unit.

The Change of Command Ceremony was attended by General Guglielmo Luigi Miglietta, Commander, Joint Force Command Brunssum (JFCBS, the Netherlands). In his speech, he said that “it has been a great pleasure to see the HQ MND-C growing and improving at the fast pace towards several operational successes and its initial operational capability”. While thanking Major General Denis Tretinjak for his three-year service, he said that the major general had done a phenomenal job in a very dynamic period of our history, and he can be rightly proud of the performance of the HQ MND-C under his command. He added that the unit he was about to leave is strong and ready to respond to the challenges.

In referring to the slogan of the headquarters (Innovation, Courage, Faith), Lieutenant General Dr. Gábor Böröndi, Chief of HDF General Staff emphasized that the establishment of the organization was a truly innovative idea. He pointed out that the initiative has proven to be a wise foresight, as four years ago, there were neither NATO requirements, nor a war in the neighborhood urging the establishment of a multinational division command in this region. Today, the rightness of the decision has been confirmed. Without courage, it would have been impossible to overcome the initial difficulties. And although the amount of this year’s challenges was no less than before, the headquarters reached a huge milestone by successfully achieving the combat ready status. He concluded his speech by adding that everybody must have faith and trust in the ability of the organization to reach Full Operational Capability by the end of this year, or at least to start executing the tasks on the road to reaching it.


Major General Denis Tretinjak looks back on the last three years with great joy and pride. As he said, they had started the work together with the first personnel of HQ MND-C, during which everyone shared their own knowledge and earlier experiences, and the tiny pieces added up to a complex mosaic. Through hard and dedicated work, this mosaic has evolved into a process and a continuously developing whole. Addressing his successor, he stated that knowing Brigadier General Králik and the soldiers of the headquarters, he is certain that they will be able to carry out the tasks ahead of them with success and high efficiency.

Brigadier General Tibor Králik likened the establishment and development of the headquarters to bringing up a child, and said that Major General Tretinjak had paved the way for the first steps of the organization like a caring father. Having assumed the command, General Králik will continue the same journey, and will make every effort, to the best of his ability and strength, in order to lead it towards achieving Full Operational Capability.

During the event – which was also attended by, among others, Slovak Chief of Defence General Daniel Zmeko; Croatian Deputy Chief of Defence Lieutenant General Siniša Jurković; András Cser-Palkovics, Mayor of the Municipality of Székesfehérvár with County Rights; and Diocesan Bishop Antal Spányi – Brigadier General Králik received the HQ MND-C flag from Major General Tretinjak in a ceremony. In recognition of his service performed with excellent preparedness and leadership, and of his relentless efforts made in the interest of carrying out the common tasks, Defence Minister Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky awarded Major General Denis Tretinjak the “For the Alliance” Service Medal. Lieutenant General Dr. Gábor Böröndi presented the decoration to the Croatian general in the framework of the ceremony.