Lithuanian MP starts collecting signatures to fire academic ethics ombudsman
Aušrinė Armonaitė, a Liberal member of the Seimas, has started collecting parliamentarians' signatures for a no-confidence motion against Vigilijus Sadauskas, the ombudsman for academic ethics and procedures.
The lawmaker took the initiative after Sadauskas offered a 1,000-euro reward to a person who collects information and writes a research paper on "individuals of Jewish nationality who killed people or contributed to deportations or tortures".
"This is pro-active anti-Semitism, because it clearly sets out the task for students to look for evidence that people of one nationality, specifically Jews, got themselves involved in killings or the organization of deportations," Armonaitė said.
"It is neither academic nor ethical nor human, especially in view of the painful history of Lithuanian Jews," she said.
According to Armonaitė, Sadauskas thus discredits himself as a state official and the Seimas, which appoints the ombudsman for academic ethics and procedures.
Under the Law on Higher Education and Research, the ombudsman may be dismissed from his post if more than half of members of the Seimas express no-confidence in him.
Viktoras Pranckietis, the speaker of the Seimas on Friday called on Sadauskas to resign, but the ombudsman said he did not plan to do so.
"A person steps down if he has done something wrong, negative or bad. (...) I do not think I have insulted, harmed or humiliated anyone," Sadauskas said.