DEFENCE Minister Juraj Liška unexpectedly sacked František Kašický, the head of military intelligence, and charged Vladimír Kotrusa with leading the service.
The minister's spokesman, Zenon Mikle, refused to comment apart from stating that it was in the minister's authority to recall Kašický.
Robert Kaliňák, the head of the parliamentary defence and security committee, had first expressed worries that Liška sacked Kašický for political reasons. After a phone conversation with the minister, he said there were exclusively professional reasons behind the recall. Former Defence Minister Ivan Mikloš had installed Kašický.
However, members of the parliamentary committee to oversee the activities of the intelligence services were shocked. Unlike the head of the Slovak Intelligence Service, Ladislav Pittner, Kašický was popular even among the opposition.
Free Forum head Ivan Šimko suspects that political reasons were behind the recall.
Compiled by Beata Balogová from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
26. May 2004 at 10:03