George Maior: Politicians show high interest in the SRI

In an interview published yesterday by ‘Evenimentul Zilei,’ SRI Director George Maior said that the opinion about the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI) being involved in political schemes is induced “by certain people with financial, media, even political power, which want to put direct or indirect pressure on the service.” “I refer to those people who feel uncomfortable with the SRI – and I will give no names, because the public knows them. I advise you to carefully look at those who make such statements: either they have a problem with the law, or they have certain economic or political interests,” the SRI head stated.According to Maior, politicians show much interest for the SRI, because “this has always happened over the last 22 years, as SRI holds the warehouse of information and knowledge of the state. And it is normal for such interest to exist, because information is seen as a factor of power.” He warned politicians not to attempt getting in touch with SRI officers, because the institution is neutral.Asked about the fate of Omar Hayssam, whether he will be brought to Romania, the SRI Director answered: “This is an ongoing process. As I already said in the past: it does not matter when Hayssam will return to Romania; what really matters is that he will return!” According to Maior, the ratification by the Romanian Senate of the extradition accord between Romania and Syria “would be of great help for our efforts aimed at getting Omar Hayssam expelled.”Asked about the dangers Romania could face in the future and if there were operative situations when terrorist networks were annihilated, Maior answered: “In the future, we will be increasingly exposed to this risk and the public should be prepared to better understand these developments.”In his interview with ‘Evenimentul Zilei,’ the SRI Director said that “a better partnership with SIE would help both services in fulfilling their missions.”Asked about the legal modification that will allow SRI officers to lead criminal investigations, George Maior said: “In order to be more efficient in defending national security, SRI must also have executive powers with regard to national security issues. I mean counterterrorism and counterespionage. It would be more efficient to have the possibility – obviously under the guidance of the prosecutor, because this is not about replacing the prosecutor – to be empowered with leading and drafting preliminary papers in these limited fields, specific to national security.”

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