The director of Slovakia's SIS intelligence service, Jozef Magala, did not explain to parliament's SIS Oversight Committee details of an alleged leak of a list of names and telephone numbers of senior members of the SIS to the media.
The tabloid Nový Čas reported in mid March that the names of top SIS officers, their phone numbers and dates of birth had been leaked from the SIS. An unidentified person sent the information in a letter to the daily, also including a description of close contacts between some agents and their capabilities. Most of SIS people on the list hung up when the daily called to ask them about their status. Others were surprised and denied any links with the SIS. Some mobile numbers were already switched off, the paper reported.
Committee head Pavol Prokopovič of the opposition Slovak Democratic and Christian Union, (SDKÚ) told the SITA newswire they were unable to discover more because the committee's jurisdiction is limited. He said the intelligence chief kept repeating that the law on the SIS did not allow him to answer questions about whether somebody is or is not a member of the intelligence service.
As a result, Prokopovič said, MPs learned nothing new, and were not even able to confirm whether the SIS is investigating the matter. Prokopovič suggested the public could learn more only from the president, speaker of parliament or the prime minister, who all get SIS information in line with the law, SITA reported.
Opposition members of the committee warned that if the leak is confirmed, it might pose a risk of further leaks of sensitive data. However, deputies for the ruling coalition said they considered it unnecessary to discuss the information published in the media.
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
24. Mar 2010 at 10:00