INTELLIGENCE JUSTICE POLITICS

Speakers of the two Chambers comment on Coldea’s testimony before the SRI Committee. Secret protocols, a written basis for a political police system, considers Dragnea. Tariceanu: Totally inadequate statements. By his behavior, Coldea is trying to avoid the truth

Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies Liviu Dragnea said on Tuesday that he does not know and does not really care what the former deputy director of the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI) Florian Coldea (photo) meant to say when he talked about Judas, adding that the protocols concluded between the SRI and other public bodies are the written basis for a political police system.

“I generally do not admonish my colleagues in the SRI Oversight Committee, not even chairman Manda, but I understand that the committee is conducting some hearings. So far as I understand, you do not show up for the hearings, read out and leave. That is not a hearing; it is a seminar when someone comes, reads out some written notes, shakes hands and walks away, maybe eventually telling some parables. (…) I’ve seen it on TV (…) and from what I’ve heard from sources [about the fact that Florian Coldea came up before the SRI Committee and read out from some notes]. (…) I have no idea who he meant by Judas, and honestly I do not really care,” said Dragnea at Parliament Palace, asked to comment on Coldea’s testimony before the SRI Committee on April 5 and to say who he thinks Coldea meant when talking about a certain Judas.

Dragnea added that he believed that the main topics were what happened in those years, and not those related to “pigs, pork rind, or that parable.”

“Let them threaten each other if they so want. All these smoke screens cannot cover what has happened and what begins to come out every day. It is a process that, in my opinion, can no longer be stopped, with all the hindrances and all the brakes,” he said.

Dragnea added that the relationship he now has with SRI Director Eduard Hellvig was the same as the one before with former SRI head George Maior and former deputy director Florian Coldea.

“Those secret protocols actually represent the basis for a political police system that has been built in Romania. I know because I lived before 1989, when [the late communist political police] Securitatea would conduct criminal investigations. Those protocols created the basis for SRI to get closer to the idea of criminal investigations,” said Dragnea.

 

Senate President Tariceanu: Totally inadequate statements. By his behavior, Coldea is trying to avoid the truth

 

Senate President Calin Popescu-Tariceanu on Tuesday stated that last’ weeks statements of former deputy director of the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI) Florin Coldea made in front of the specialized committee for SRI supervision were “totally inadequate, by the way he behaved, the answers he gave, and by the manner in which he was trying to avoid the actual truths.”

“Based on the information that I do have and the statements made by the committee’s head, Mr. Claudiu Manda, it results that Mr. Coldea’s statements and answers were totally inadequate. By his behavior, his answers, by the manner in which he was actually trying to avoid the truths that must be said in front of the committee, for this is the actual role of this committee, to verify the lawfulness of the functioning of the services in Romania,” specified Tariceanu, in front of the Standing Bureau, answering a question related to this matter.

He also added that, in fact, Coldea tried during the hearings to lead to the idea that the declassification of protocols “could generate certain problems in terms of national security.”

“I saw afterwards in the media those threats and we, those with a certain political experience, smiled. What I mean is that he [i.e. Coldea] tried to induce the idea that the declassification of protocols could generate certain problems in terms of national security. I would only ask this: in the United States, where they are facing a much greater danger, a concrete one, on their territory and in other places, how do they solve these problems without having such protocols in place? Are these protocols the key to solving this problem? I believe that both the Criminal Code and the Criminal Procedure Code are enough, without the need to add more to the law. If we need to add to the law, then this should be done exclusively by Parliament alone and not by anybody else,” Tariceanu stressed.

In this context, the Senate President referred to the visit made by the head of the parliamentary committee for the control of the SRI activity, Claudiu Manda, in Germany.

“Three members of the Committee for the control of the Service have made a trip, recently. I would tell you to get in touch with them and discuss these details. They contacted the similar committee in Germany and discussed, including this matter and those people were astonished, they said that nothing like this exists in Germany and that Germany would be on fire if something like this existed,” said Tariceanu, in relation to the protocols concluded by the SRI.

When asked if he knew about the protocol signed between the Prosecutor’s Office and the SRI while he was a Prime Minister and a Vice-President of the Romania’s Supreme Council of National Defence (CSAT), Tariceanu denied that he knew anything about the matter.

Asked about the lawfulness off such protocol, in the context in which the CSAT was not informed, the Senate President said: “This is precisely the topic of the public debate, that these protocols have no legal grounds, they added something up to the law and I believe that we must bring all the protocols signed by the SRI with the other institutions to light,” concluded Tariceanu.

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