POLICE are investigating a case in which unknown perpetrators put a list of "enemies of the white race" onto a neo-Nazi website and encouraged skinheads to kill those named.
The Interior Ministry said police would not provide any further details; claiming that it would "negatively influence the investigation," said the ministry's spokeswoman Jana Pôbišová.
The website, which exists on a Russian server, was still accessible on the Internet when The Slovak Spectator went to print, having moved from its original address at www.nsinfo.nm.ru to www.nsinfo.narod.ru and later to www.nsinfo.by.ru after the Slovak media reported the case.
The webpage, along with the list of nearly 30 people who can be targeted according to the authors, also says: "On these [people on the list] you can practice [techniques of] pursuit, taking pictures, house surveillance, and, of course, attacks, e.g. one on one, two on one, five on one, night or day attacks, in town, on a bus, simply anywhere."
The website also says: "All of these addresses and names have been checked. You can therefore be 100 percent sure that if you attack anyone listed here, you will kill a person who really deserves it.
"We are national socialists and we have no reason to attack normal white people."
It is believed that the perpetrators got the personal data of the potential targets from a petition, part of which went missing several months ago.
"The probable source of the data is a petition to free Mário Bango, a Roma who allegedly stabbed a skinhead to death in self-defence," said Ladislav Ďurkovič, head of the People against racism NGO in Bratislava.
It was his organisation who first contacted the people on the list and, in their name ,pressed charges against the unknown perpetrators.
The Interior Ministry assured that the police, along with Interpol, were working hard to solve the case. It remains unknown, however, whether officers have already identified the individual or possibly group behind the incitement.
"I can assure the public that the police are working on this case with maximum effort. But further publicity for this case would endanger the investigation," Pôbišová said on August 11.
The case has yet again highlighted the problem of neo-Nazi extremism in Slovakia. Similar extremists were paid special attention in 2001 when a special unit for fighting right-wing and left-wing extremists was created within the Slovak police force.
That unit, however, was perceived as too small and lacking the necessary capacity and funds to fight the extremists effectively.
According to Ďurkovič, there are about 5,000 neo-Nazi supporters in Slovakia and only a unit composed of ten officers to fight them. That, the activist said, was "terribly little".
In the neighbouring Czech Republic, for example, police had a similar unit staffed with 160 specialists.
"The ten Slovak officers simply can't work hard enough. There are too few of them and there is a lot of work to do. I am very disappointed that [Interior Minister Vladimír] Palko has not increased the staff in this unit to address neo-Nazism in Slovakia," Ďurkovič said.
Ironically, the news of a neo-Nazi target list surfaced at a time when the Interior Ministry said in its plan of domestic security that "extremism does not represent a threat to the [integrity] of the country", the state-run TASR agency reported on August 8.
According to Pôbišová, what was meant by domestic security was that "in Slovakia there are no active extremist groups inclined to use terrorist methods" and that "in order to improve the quality of protection of the constitutional establishment" the ministry has pledged to prepare a long term plan on fighting extremism within Slovakia.
The most recent case, meanwhile, remains unsolved and activists hope that it will cause the police to take a more active stance towards existing extremist groups in the country although their methods may not be of a terrorist nature.
"Neo-Nazi concerts are often held in Slovakia; racist websites are being created here. Race hate is present and it has already caused a lot of pain and suffering to many victims. It's about time this was addressed seriously," Ďurkovič said.
18. Aug 2003 at 0:00 | Martina Pisárová