Expert: Court Decision on Babis Widely Misinterpreted

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Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis. (Stock photo by TASR)

Bratislava, February 14 (TASR) – The fuss surrounding Bratislava Regional Court’s decision to reject Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis’s lawsuit against Slovakia’s Nation’s Memory Institute (UPN) concerning the publication of files on his registration as a former communist Czechoslovak secret service (StB) agent has resulted in many people misleadingly interpreting it to mean that Babis was correctly recorded as an StB agent, analyst Milan Zitny told TASR on Wednesday.

Zitny acted as a court expert in the court dispute two years ago.

In fact, according to Zitny, the Bratislava court – echoing a verdict of the Constitutional Court from last year – only ruled that UPN shouldn’t have been taken to court for releasing copies of the files.

“The Constitutional Court in its findings acknowledged that UPN shouldn’t face lawsuits and the consequences of lost legal disputes. The Constitutional Court has thereby created a legal vacuum and chaos by not designating an entity that could be sued by people who believe that their listing in StB records was unjustified,” said Zitny. He added that Babis, who was born in Slovakia, now seems to be the only one to be damaged by the Bratislava Regional Court decision, as it’s unclear whom he could take to court over the issue.

Nonetheless, Babis has already vowed to continue his legal battle. “My lawyers are saying that they’ll sue the [Slovak] Interior Ministry, the Slovak Intelligence Service (SIS), and perhaps we’ll even go to the European Court of Human Rights. So don’t say that I’ve definitely lost,” said Babis, according to Czech news website Novinky.cz. He stressed that he didn’t sign any agreement on cooperation with the StB and didn’t cooperate with it, either.

Meanwhile, UPN stated that it didn’t interfere with Babis’s right to a reputation by releasing copies of StB files, as it’s mandated to engage in such activity by law.