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Named and shamed

HEAD of the parliamentary security and defence committee Robert Kaliňák has further stirred political waters by publicising the names of people whom, he says, Prime Minister Mikuláš Dzurinda identified as "enemies" of the state and particularly of the Slovak Democratic and Christian Union (SDKÚ).
Opposition Smer MP Kaliňák listed National Security Office (NBÚ) director Ján Mojžiš, police investigator Jozef Šátek, Editor-in-Chief of the daily SME Martin M. Šimečka, Radio Free Europe reporter Milan Žitný and businessmen Miloš Žiak, Peter Lukeš and Michal Lazar as members of a group that Dzurinda recently blamed for critical articles published by British journal Jane's Intelligence Digest.


Opposition MP claims Prime Minister Mikuláš Dzurinda (centre) included National Security Office head Ján Mojžiš (right) on list of "enemies of the state"
photo: TASR

HEAD of the parliamentary security and defence committee Robert Kaliňák has further stirred political waters by publicising the names of people whom, he says, Prime Minister Mikuláš Dzurinda identified as "enemies" of the state and particularly of the Slovak Democratic and Christian Union (SDKÚ).

Opposition Smer MP Kaliňák listed National Security Office (NBÚ) director Ján Mojžiš, police investigator Jozef Šátek, Editor-in-Chief of the daily SME Martin M. Šimečka, Radio Free Europe reporter Milan Žitný and businessmen Miloš Žiak, Peter Lukeš and Michal Lazar as members of a group that Dzurinda recently blamed for critical articles published by British journal Jane's Intelligence Digest.

Dzurinda denied Kaliňák's claim and pressed him to reveal his sources. The Smer MP disclosed that he got the list from SDKÚ circles. The SDKÚ is planning to sue Kaliňák for identifying the SDKÚ as the source of the list. The prime minister says Kaliňák has harmed the reputation of the SDKÚ.

Experts say that Dzurinda's party has very little chance of winning the lawsuit. Lawyer Tomas Kamenec told the daily SME that Kaliňák in fact did not attack the SDKÚ; he only said that he had obtained the list from Dzurinda's party.

The prime minister previously referred to this group shortly after British magazine Jane's Intelligence Digest published a series of critical pieces on the operation of the country's intelligence service, the SIS. He told the public that the group is intentionally trying to bring negative publicity for Slovakia, further adding that he knew its members but declining to name them publicly.

However, Dzurinda did identify the members of the mysterious group to a special prosecutor, whom he met on August 18. A special team has already been assembled to investigate the group.

Appearing on private news channel TA3, SME editor-in-chief Šimečka, whose name appeared on the list, said that, as a journalist, he had been listed as an enemy by former prime minister Vladimír Mečiar as well. The SME editor assumes that the case of "the list of the enemies of the nation" is linked to the sacking of the head of the National Security Office.

Private TV Markíza, in its prime time news slot on August 19, broadcast the information that during his meeting with the special prosecutor, Dzurinda talked only about two people who reportedly have been discrediting Slovakia. According to the TV station, Dzurinda only mentioned NBU's Mojžiš and businessman and writer Miloš Žiak.

Reportedly, they both were involved in unfair practices during tenders for state orders for a Defence Ministry IT system, state treasury IT system, governmental computer network and a tender for passenger trains, while Mojžiš allegedly was influencing these tenders through industrial security checks.

In response to information on Mojžiš being listed among the "enemies of the nation," President Rudolf Schuster told news wire SITA that he does not know about anything regarding Mojžiš that would confirm that the NBÚ head was involved in illegal activities. "I know that Mojžiš has been strict concerning the background checks, but it does not mean we should suspect him of illegal activities," Schuster told SITA.

British ambassador to Slovakia Ric Todd met with Mojžiš on August 22. The British diplomat has not confirmed that the meeting was to support Mojžiš, though the media has speculated that the meeting was an expression of support.

"Cooperation between the British government and Slovakia should not be influenced by media speculations," Todd told journalists.

"It is important that Slovakia has an independent, professional, and effective organization such as the NBÚ," he added.

A meeting between Mojžiš and United States ambassador Ronald Weiser was scheduled for August 26.

The daily SME wrote on August 22 that head of the NATO Security Office Wayne Richak had suggested that Mojžiš had their confidence.

The NBÚ, a national vetting authority that carries out clearance tests on state employees who will access NATO's classified information after Slovakia becomes a NATO member, said in early February that various former communist secret police (ŠtB) agents currently employed in Slovak security bodies have been plotting to discredit Mojžiš. He filed a motion with the Attorney General's Office to have the allegations investigated on January 30.

However, Prosecutor General Milan Hanzel announced on August 7 that Mojžiš' allegations about former ŠtB agents had not been confirmed. No secret structures have been trying to force the NBÚ head from his office, Hanzel told media.

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