"The arrest of Mečiar was a police matter and the government can't intervene. But even the three-time prime minister is just a normal citizen and he has to take responsibility for what he did. The government agreed that the law must be the same for everybody. I personally didn't know about the action. My spokesman just sent me an SMS message on my mobile phone telling me it happened."
"I consider the raid to be an extreme police action if the special commandos acted just because of the illegal bonuses. The timing of the action wasn't good, either, and it won't help to improve the overall situation in Slovakia. This will definitely give the HZDS more support. But we have to see it as a
decision of the police rather than a decision of politicians."
"As the second highest ranking Slovak official, I am very sorry that I first received word of the arrest through the media But I would have appreciated it if Mečiar had voluntarily testified. I will ask him for an explanation of some of the details."
"The law has to be the same for everybody, even for such a VIP as Mečiar. I believe the police acted according to the law. [The raid] could have happened at a much earlier date - for a month we were just talking about it."
"Mečiar's arrest was funny. Mečiar as well as Dzurinda is turning Slovakia into a theatre - it's like the wild west. Mečiar because he was hiding in his villa and Dzurinda because he's using the raid to mask the failures of his government."
"The police attack was clear evidence that under this government Slovakia has no rule of law. We are heading towards a police state, which doesn't even hesitate to employ state terrorism."
"To call the country's former PM to a police hearing by sending masked commandos who blow his door open seems to me like a sci-fi movie. I think we're used to hearing of such news from wild countries, but this certainly does not belong in central Europe. I have always used very soft words with Slovakia but now I have to say that this was a form of 'self-ousting' [Slovakia] from the family of civilised countries."
Václav Klaus, former Czech PM and leader of the Civic Democratic Party.
1. May 2000 at 0:00