Petition Calling for Scrapping of Meciar Amnesties Delivered to House

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Bratislava, March 21 (TASR) – As many as 76,831 people have supported the call to abrogate the so-called Meciar amnesties via an online petition (www.somza.to) launched two weeks ago and delivered to Parliament by NGO VIA IURIS along with students on Tuesday.

“We want to tell MPs by this that people aren’t indifferent to this issue and urge them to act in a responsible manner to find a common solution and finally resolve the issue,” said Zuzana Caputova of VIA IURIS. She added that this is the biggest online petition in the history of the independent Slovakia. “This is a strong signal to MPs concerning the public interest in this issue and a particular wish to scrap the amnesties,” stated Caputova.

VIA IURIS thinks it sufficient to scrap Meciar’s amnesties via a constitutional law. “A proposal by the governing coalition … to enact this power for Parliament directly in the Constitution is understandable and acceptable, but it’s rather questionable whether it should be done via fast-track proceedings,” stated Caputova. VIA IURIS views giving the Constitutional Court the power to intervene in  a decision made by Parliament as something extra. “However, we’ll fully respect this if political parties agree on it. If they choose this way and it eventually results in scrapping Meciar’s amnesties, which is our goal, we’ll accept it,” said Caputova.

Originally, MPs were scheduled to discuss the abrogation of Meciar’s amnesties on Tuesday, but they agreed to suspend the discussion until next Tuesday (March 28). The Opposition will support the governing coalition’s initiative, but only under five conditions.

First of all, the Opposition wants a guarantee that the kidnapping of the then president’s son Michal Kovac Jr. in 1995 and the murder in 1996 of Robert Remias, who served as a contact for a key witness of the abduction, won’t be considered as coming under the statute of limitations.

The second condition concerns a joint political agreement between the coalition and the Opposition on who will represent Parliament at the Constitutional Court on this matter. The Opposition wants to see a vigorous defence, with the defender able to submit objections of bias against some constitutional judges.

The Opposition further demands that not only the pardon granted by former president Kovac to his son should be revoked, but also all pardons granted concerning economic criminal activities in the Technopol case. Entrepreneur Marian Kocner was among these people, for example.

Condition number four states that the Constitutional Court shouldn’t take action regarding Meciar’s amnesties ex officio, but only if at least 30 MPs approach the Constitutional Court in this regard.

The fifth requirement is that the Slovak president and cabinet should be secondary parties at the Constitutional Court in the case of Meciar’s amnesties.

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