Spectator on facebook

Spectator on facebook

Slovakia able to deal with extremism more effectively

The amendment introduces a number of legally binding EU directives.

Illustrative stock photo(Source: SME)

Slovakia should be able to deal with extremism and racism more effectively, with the parliament approving an amendment to relevant legislation by 98 votes.

The amendment is part of a legislative package that transposes a number of legally binding EU directives into Slovakia’s legal system. The changes should enable more effective investigations into extremism-related crimes, Justice Minister Lucia Žitňanská (Most-Híd) expects.

The statistical data indicated a drop in extremist crimes from 112 in 2012 to 30 in 2015, but this is sometimes interpreted as a failure in the fight against extremism, she pointed out, as reported by the TASR newswire.

The drop is the result of an inability to uncover certain criminal activities, which have often been transferred to the internet, thereby making prosecution more difficult, the minister opines. She also feels that judges specialising in this agenda are lacking.

The investigators often misclassify such crimes as misdemeanours, with subsequent punishments therefore mild and failing to act as deterrents, Žitňanská said, as reported by TASR.

Rulings on this type of criminal activity will be transferred from the remit of 54 district courts to that of the Specialised Criminal Court, with charges likely to be pressed by a special prosecutor.

The amendment also introduces new classifications of racially motivated hate crimes and specifications of what constitutes extremist materials. It also introduces the crime of apartheid, defined by the 2002 Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court as inhumane acts of a character similar to other crimes against humanity “committed in the context of an institutionalised regime of systematic oppression and domination by one racial group over any other racial group or groups and committed with the intention of maintaining that regime”, TASR reported.

The existing expert fields will be expanded in the near future, with a separate field dedicated to extremism, Žitňanská claimed.

Top stories

In praise of concrete

It was once notorious for its drab tower blocks and urban crime, but Petržalka now epitomises modern Slovakia.

Petržalka is the epitome of communist-era architecture.

Slow down, fashion

Most people are unaware that buying too many clothes too harms the environment.

In shallow waters, experts are expendable

Mihál says that it is Sulík, the man whom his political opponents mocked for having a calculator for a brain, who “is pulling the party out of liberal waters and towards somewhere completely different”.

Richard Sulík is a man of slang.

Blog: Exploring 20th century military sites in Bratislava

It seems to be the fate of military sites and objects in Bratislava that none of them were ever used for the purposes they were built for - cavernas from WWI, bunkers from WWII, nuclear shelters or the anti-aircraft…

One nuclear shelter with a capacity for several hundred people now serves as a music club with suitable name Subclub (formerly U-club).